For me, it’s rare when I can watch a movie 7 or 8 or 9 times and still have a chicken-shit grin on my face when watching. The last one I can remember doing that for me was probably Inception. That’s what this movie is for me.
Edgar Wright has refined what makes a movie fun and enjoyable and intertwined it with the narrative of the film. There are very few, if any, dragging points where I wish something more exciting was happening; the film has a very nice pace that compliments multiple viewings.
That being said, it’s one of my favorite films of all time–but don’t let that hype it up too much for you, it’s just one guy’s opinion, I believe everyone should go into movies with low expectations so that they don’t get let down by the hype that a lot of movies build nowadays.
The music is the backbone of the film, it drives the pacing, the cutting, and the blocking (which is on-beat for pretty much the whole film), aside from obviously the subtext of the scene. The songs inform us about character, mood, and tone, in addition to being a distinct stylistic choice. The whole film captured the feeling that a badass movie trailer or music video gives us, and sustains it throughout the course of the piece.
Going off of the music, the editing is another exemplary attribute to this film. They had an editor doing a preliminary rough cut while literally on set while they were shooting, the editor giving feedback to Edgar as they went, so they knew how much coverage they had and how much more they’d need to get in order for it to be on the beat of the song. One really col thing, which is technically the sound mixing, is that the sound really puts us in Baby’s shoes–there are scenes in which Baby’s headphones are pulled out, and when there is only one headphone in, the corresponding side of the theater is the only place the music will be coming from (right headphone in, right side has music playing).
The Production Design is another very nice talking point, as the characters are all color-coded, with the lighting to compliment them. The wardrobe alone speaks a lot to the progression of characters, and really accentuates all of the progress made in each character’s arc.
In terms of the narrative, I really liked the progression of the story. Baby goes through a lot of changes, there’s a lot of cool little foreshadowing nuggets, and the cast of characters around him pushes him in ways that I didn’t expect. It has a nice, believable flow to it, with maybe the exception of the love interest maybe moving a little too fast, and Kevin Spacey’s character (I know, I know, Kevin Spacey) was surprisingly profound, and although I hear his character commonly criticized for not making sense, I think it’s due to a misunderstanding of his motivations. Without going into spoilers, I strongly believe Spacey’s character (Doc) saw Baby as the son he never got to have (and there’s plenty of evidence to support that) so I think all his actions are grounded and honestly were pretty moving to me.
Overall, I’m in love with this movie. I’m not gonna lie, I’m a little bit biased in its favor, but I think the things it does right well outweigh any flaws it might have. It’s got laughs, it’s got action, its got love, drama, tension, and real stakes. All around a badass flick. If you haven’t seen it, I believe its a must-see for anyone who appreciates the craft of film.