No one could have put it better than my very own compatriot, Guillermo Del Toro, “This is an American in Paris on wheels and crack smoke.” Edgar Wright is more than a cinematic gem, he’s diamond of creative output that shines amongst the common staleness of the modern industry and Baby Driver is yet another reminder of just how incredibly talented this British auteur really is.
From the roaring call of The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion’s Bellbottoms to Simon & Garfunkel’s soothing Baby Driver, Baby Driver is a complete thrill-ride full of some of the most fantastic car chases put to screen in recent years and a captivating turn from Ansel Elgort as a classic leading man with the looks of James Dean and the moves of Fred Astaire. Birthed from a concept Edgar Wright developed when directing a music video, Baby Driver starts off as an awesome concept that’s elevated by Wright’s unique sense of style and encyclopedic musical senses. The music isn’t just there to accompany each car chase, but to drive the narrative as a whole in a way that doesn’t seem at all gimmicky but entirely essential to the way the film is crafted.
Let’s talk about the titular character, Baby, after which the film is named after. Ansel Elgort is a star, as I stated earlier he sways like Astaire but acts like Dean, all the while retaining the naïve soul of a hopeless romantic, one that doesn’t fit amongst the wild individuals he has to work with. Led by crime-mastermind Doc (Kevin Spacey), who’s as menacing as always, and accompanied by the likes of Bats (Jamie Foxx), a batshit crazy Foxx, Buddy (Jon Hamm), a role that liberates Hamm from the Don Draper persona, and his girlfriend Darling (Eiza González). The choice of placing the noble Baby amidst these insane delinquents motivates the story fabulously, especially by the time we reach the third act and the film reaches new heights of awesomeness as it becomes into a modern day Bonnie & Clyde.
What can I say, Edgar Wright’s done it again, its his fifth movie to date and its still as fresh and cool as his directorial debut. Baby Driver rips and roars from start to finish, introduces to another edge of Ansel Elgort, and gives us the best soundtrack of the year because it’s not just a compilation of great songs put together, but a meticulously compiled set of musical choices that drive the story, build characters, and elevate scenes. Baby Driver is yet another fantastic film from director Edgar Wright that gets me even more excited for whatever wacko project he’s working on next.