From the moment the first guitar chords strike you know “Baby Driver” is going to take you on a unique ride. Edgar Wright has not crafted just another movie, not just another heist film, but created what has as much in common with a full blown dance musical as it does with a standard action flick. When the music plays absolutely everything is choreographed to the song. Dialog is slung, heads bob, tires squeal and gunfire rat-a-tats with the rhythm of the funky beat.
The plot to Edgar Wright’s latest is a familiar one, but is told with such style and creativity that it adds additional credence to the axiom “Every story has already been told, it matters only how you retell it.” Baby (Ansel Elgort) is a young, extremely talented driver who made a mistake and found himself on the wrong side of the wrong-side-of-the-law. Indebted to criminal mastermind Doc (Kevin Spacey), Baby only needs one last job before he can be free from this life of crime. But we all know it’s never that easy. Baby is tasked with being the getaway driver for a variety of baddies who fill the entire spectrum of insane. Griff(Jon Bernthal) is efficient, yet a bit of a bully. Bats (Jamie Foxx) is bat-sh!t crazy with an unpredictable homicidal streak. Buddy (Jon Hamm) and Darling (Eiza González) are newlyweds who feed off crime like it’s foreplay. It’s gonna be hard for Baby to go straight when everyone around him is so twisted.
But not all is bad around Baby. He has two moral centers, the first being a deaf older man (CJ Jones) he cares for at home. The second is an innocent waitress at the diner he likes to frequent. Her name is Debora(Lily James) and she immediately takes a liking to him and his quirky musical habits. The chemistry is strong between these two and it’s not long before they are tapping toes together every chance they get. They share a common dream, hitting the highway, driving west without a plan, and good tunes on the radio. Perhaps, after this one last job, he can make their dream a reality. Unfortunately, as we all know falling in love with someone, especially someone innocent makes them a liability when you are in that line of work. It’s not long until Baby’s backed into a corner and has to make some tough decisions.
As mentioned above, this plot could describe a dozen different films of varying quality, but none of them are quite like “Baby Driver.” The energy in this film is infectious, it’s impossible to not to nod your head along to the jams as Baby pulls a sweet double 180 through a cramped alley. How can you not crack a grin when Buddy does a shoulder roll, popping up next to his wife and cocking the slide of his wife’s gun during the midst of an unexpected firefight? Further boosting the brilliance of this movie are the car-chase scenes. Modern filming technology, and good old-school practical effects using real cars, doing real stunts, marry to bring us some of the best driving scenes of the 2000s. Wright has always showcased rhythmic editing throughout his previous films, especially the Cornetto Trilogy, but never to this extent. If those were his melodies, then “Baby Driver” is his magnum opus.
Enjoy the Sweet BABY DRIVER Soundtrack on Spotify now: