Driving a car at full throttle isn’t usually synonymous with elegance, grace or style, yet Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver manages to associate speed with poise and action with finesse. An unexpectedly exhilarating, adrenaline fueled, action film, Baby Driver surprised and delighted from the moment Ansel Elgort revved his engine.
Baby Driver is an action film by acclaimed director, Edgar Wright, whose repertoire includes Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, Scott Pilgrim vs the World and Marvel’s Ant-Man. With a stellar cast including Kevin Spacey, Jon Hamm, Jon Bernthal, Jamie Foxx, Lily James and Ansel Elgort, Baby Driver proved to be a whole lot more fun than I ever imagined.
The film follows Baby (Elgort), a talented getaway driver for a band of robbers led by the calculative Doc (Spacey), who relies on the beat of his personal playlist to get him through challenging situations. Meeting and subsequently falling in love with the woman of his dreams, Baby decides to leave his criminal lifestyle behind but is coerced into one last heist, which threatens those he holds dear, his freedom and ultimately his life, setting into motion epic car chases, gun-fire, deception and a chocker full of adrenaline fueled action.
Edgar Wright certainly knows how to tell a story. The plot of the film, including explanations of Baby’s past, is illustrated exceptionally well through the combined use of flashbacks and soundtrack. Despite a simple and to the point story-line, Baby Driver manages to pull off what so few others have done in the past, which is to transform something simple to something glorious. The way in which the story is told is handled well and crafted in a way that keeps audiences engaged throughout the duration of the film, especially with little bouts of humour included.
Character development is by far one of the best aspects of the film, as we witness each character’s growth as the film progresses, especially that of Baby. Unlike most films, each character played a unique and vital role in the film as well as in Baby’s life. It was also intriguing that the villain in the film was entirely subjective, without a specified character being singled out as the ‘big bad’.
The action sequences in the film were exhilarating, thrilling and kept me glued to the screen. Baby’s driving was unlike anything I’ve seen before, with a certain kind of grace and style that felt reminiscent of an elegant ballet routine. Even the handling of vehicles in the Fast and the Furious films had nothing on Baby Driver. On top of the brilliant driving scenes and car chases, the way in which the various heists were planned and carried out were also captivating.
Of course, with such high octane action scenes comes brilliant visuals. As mentioned above, the use of flashbacks were certainly creative, but the various cut scenes depicting old 1950s fashion and lifestyle was most welcome and added a bit of nostalgic flavour to the modern day action film. Some of the visuals were also beautifully artistic, with lyrics appearing on paintings and the like, making for a rather colourful film.
Whilst plot, character, action scenes and visuals were all crucial aspects towards making Baby Driver a top notch film, it was the fantastic use of eclectic soundtrack which really drove the film to greatness. Music, in the film, is as important as the cars and highlights the various tones of the film, creating an atmosphere to go with the changes in plot and environment. It was especially exciting to witness every action in the film being carried out to each beat of the music, illustrating the significance of music in Baby’s life. Another interesting detail, which I noticed, was the ringing sound that can be heard whenever music wasn’t playing, which ties in well with Baby’s character and the story of the film.
Baby Driver certainly was an unexpected treat to watch. With an array of interesting characters, fantastic action and a wickedly good soundtrack, Edgar Wright most definitely has another hit on his hands that isn’t just for petrol heads and adrenaline junkies. If you’re looking for a refreshing action flick, the likes of which you’ve yet to see this year, check out the film when it releases in cinemas on 20 July.