I liked La La Land. Not everyone I know did, and that even proved to be fodder for SNL.
I like musicals. Love many. Cabaret. A Chorus Line (only on stage). But I’m allergic to bad movie musicals (A Chorus Line) as much as the next person.
I loved the opening of the movie- knew it was a musical but still found it unexpected. Not just the musical number itself, but its unabashed, (un)ironic, ever increasing, joy.
The joy continued with the Umbrellas of Cherbourg colour palette.
Some friends found the plot – well, not high enough character stakes. I did. As an actor/teacher/writer, author of a one man show ( Monologues ), it wasn’t hard for me to relate to it all. To many, the main characters’ artistic, and romantic struggles, seemed small.
I didn’t. If anything, I found the ending satisfying. Without spoiling, between love and career, one works out, and the other does not (for both hero and heroine).
In my experience, artistic lives exist very often in a gray area between success and failure. Some succeed for a while, but not consistent enough to reliably pay the bills. Some careers completely fade and morph into something else. The rare ones shoot for the stratosphere and make it- and continue to do so.
But gray is not the palette of La La Land. It’s purple and turquoise and cotton candy. I’d rather have that at the #movies than gray any time.
I wish it well at the Oscar nods tomorrow.