I’ve seen Ansel Elgort in films like “The Fault In Our Stars” and the “Divergent” franchise and I must admit that I saw his potential. However, he completely blew me away with his latest starrer “Baby Driver” and for good reason. He really held his own against veteran stars on the film’s roster and shone in his first solo leading role.
Synopsis: “Baby” (Ansel Elgort) a talented driver suffering from a hearing condition called Tinnitus has been driving for criminal mastermind Doc (Kevin Spacey) for years to pay off a debt. Working with different crews for every job, he never fails to pull off each job armed only with mad driving skills and his playlist of the day to get him through. As he completes payment of his debt, Doc calls him again and gives him no choice but to sign up for another job, this time with the volatile and trigger happy Bats (Jamie Foxx) and crazy couple Buddy (Jon Hamm) and Darling (Eiza Gonzalez). However, one thing goes wrong and sets a chain reaction of misfortunes for Baby and his crew.
If the opening sequence was to be the basis for judging this movie, I would have no trouble giving this movie a 10. This film consistently delivered on amazing car stunts and fancy driving that made for good entertainment. I loved how Baby’s playlist helped set the tone for the car chases and the other scenes and the song selection was pretty spot on. Ansel Elgort also showed his goofy side as well as his intense side in potraying the role, showing his fans different dimensions in his acting.
Ansel Elgort really shone in “Baby Driver” and made it his own. From the onset, you root for his character because he was just so effortlessly cool. Unlike other movies, the narrative for this film was pretty straightforward and did not dwell on the dramatic elements of Baby’s backstory. However, the short flashbacks more than effectively told his story. Elgort owned this movie with his charm and innocence but more than delivered when it came to the parts that called for him to go dark. I’m pretty on the fence about his love interest Lily James as Deborah. Of all the strong performances in the movie, I thought that she played it too cute, which stuck out like a sore thumb in a sea of great acting.
Speaking of great performances, kudos to Jamie Foxx for being an awesome assw*pe, Jon Hamm for being borderline crazy and partially compassionate, Jon Bernthal for his brief but effective appearance and Kevin Spacey for being effortlessly effective as an opportunist with a heart.
While the story was a bit cliche towards the middle, I thought that the strong cast made up for it. I liked that there was a foreshadowing about what was to come from the beginning but it wasn’t too much of a giveaway. While the ending was a bit on the corny side, it was overall an entertaining way to spend 113 minutes. I am definitely looking forward to Ansel Elgort’s future projects after this. I was really impressed. If you’re a fan of fast cars, this is definitely the film for you — fancy driving even minus the top of the line cars but its just as entertaining.