La La Land is well lit, well designed, well shot and well choreographed. It’s two leads showed commitment, and dedication, showcased by them learning the skills needed to take on their roles.
What La La Land is not is impactful. There’s no intensity, no gut-wrenching emotion churned out of it, whether happy or sad. It’s a shallow love letter from Hollywood to Hollywood. It reads:
Life in LA sure can be crazy, but wouldn’t you agree that we have a history of being amazing? It goes without saying, but let’s take 2 hours and 8 minutes to say it anyway!
It’s hard to be surprised that it swept Oscar nominations. It was made for the academy.
But to those who this movie wasn’t made for, it is a generic romp through easy to reach humour and weak drama, mixed with two leads who, despite the commendable effort put forward, could not bring forth the talent of the early Hollywood musicals they tried to omage.
In the end, it’s light-hearted and fun, but in no way should their Oscar nominations con you into taking this movie seriously.
(Image from MST3K, the best reviewers in the world. Sorry Ebert.)