Baby Driver centres around a young getaway driver named Baby (Ansel Elgort) who works for a crime boss named Doc (Kevin Spacey). Due to a traumatic incident that happened when he was a child Baby suffers from tinnitus which means he has a constant humming sound in his ears. To drown this out he lives his life constantly plugged into music from his iPod which essentially provides the charismatic soundtrack for the film. The skilled getaway driver more or less relies on his music to perform at his best during intense heists where it is his job to get everyone away from the crime scene in one piece.
As a result of past events, Baby is indebted to crime boss Doc who keeps pulling him back into a life he no longer wants to be part of. However, after falling for a waitress named Debora (Lily James), Baby sees an opportunity to ditch his unlawful lifestyle and make a clean getaway with the girl of his dreams. After clearing his debt Baby agrees to do one last heist for Doc but things end up going south leaving the young getaway driver’s life, love and freedom hanging in the balance.
Buddy (Jon Hamm), Darling (Eiza González), Griff (Jon Bernthal) and Bats (Jamie Foxx) make up Doc’s criminal crew. Each one of them – apart from baby – has a psychotic personality yet they are all unique characters with different demeanours. This mix of personalities results in some intense and often humorous scenes where egos are in a constant battle to come out on top. They continually struggle to see eye to eye which results in some very entertaining interactions.
Baby Driver was very easy to watch. It’s not one of those films with such a deep story that you struggle to keep up. It is a light, fun, stylish and above all else ‘cool’ film with some amazing driving scenes and a lively soundtrack. Those expecting anything more will be disappointed.
After seeing actor extraordinaire Kevin Spacey completely kill it in House of Cards recently I think a lot of people will feel his role in this film was somewhat lacklustre in comparison. There is no denying that Spacey is far from full throttle in this film, but he doesn’t need to be. As the criminal kingpin, he often plays a role similar to that of a school teacher calming down a classroom of unruly students when trying to stop fights within the crew. He plays his role well and adds a touch of class to the dialogue.
The director of Baby Driver, Edgar Wright, did a great job with the pacing of this film. It’s action packed but slows down for character development at the right times. I personally felt that the conversations between Baby and Debora were a bit cheesy at times but those moments didn’t drag on for too long so it wasn’t a big deal. The connection between Baby and his foster father Joseph (CJ Jones) was refreshingly different due to the fact that Joseph – who is deaf – listens to sound through his fingertips. They communicate through sign language and lip-reading but their communication through music further fuels the musical theme of this film.
On the subject of music, you can expect to hear everything from Carla Thomas and the Commodores right through to Queen. The marriage between the music and the high octane action scenes is exceptional. You don’t need to be into cars and driving to enjoy and appreciate the skill required to pull off some of the scenes in this movie. The cinematography is slick, fast paced and clean with less emphasis on what car is being driven but more on how it is being driven.
Looking at the cast for this film it’s almost shocking to step back and actually appreciate the plethora of high-level talent that was drafted in. There wasn’t one actor who delivered a show stopping performance, instead, there was a team of actors who played their roles really well and delivered an awesome movie. The retro references throughout the film add character without overdoing it. Edgar Wright did a good job of not leaning on the talent of the actors and forgetting about the authenticity of the action. I found the getaway scenes fast paced, intense and thrilling. And although the plot of the film is quite straightforward there are still some funny twists that have been thrown in to keep things exciting. Overall Baby Driver is a lively and easy to watch action comedy with character and a great soundtrack.
Name: Baby Driver
Rating: Rated R (Cert 15)
Director: Edgar Wright
Written by: Edgar Wright
Theatrical release date: 28th June 2017
Running time: 113 minutes
Studio: Tristar/Sony Pictures