Director: Damien Chazelle
- Directing 5/5
- Writing 4/5
- Cinematography 4/5
- Acting 4/5
- Production Design 5/5
Oscar Win for
- Best Actress
- Best Director
- Best Cinematography
- Best Original Score
- Best Song (City of Stars)
- Best Production Design
Oscar Nomination for
- Best Picture
- Best Actor
- Best Screenplay
- Best Film Editing
- Best Costume Design
- Best Sound Mixing
- Best Sound Editing
- Best Original Song (The Fools Who Dream)
+ Notable Production Design and Music
– Slow, if you’re not there for the music/the dreamer plot, then you’ll be bored.
Despite the Best Picture fiasco at the recent Academy Awards, La La Land made a big splash at the Oscars. From whimsical music numbers to gorgeous settings, La La Land picked up an incredible number of awards.
In fact, La La Land won the most Golden Globes ever, garnishing seven awards.
But does the musical even deserve all the hype? I’m not here to talk about any snubs or who should have won this or that award. Why was the film was so popular and should it have garnished so many awards in the first place?
As someone who despises musical numbers in my films, I started watching La La Land as a skeptic. Yet as I watched, I found myself actually enjoying the film. It was… good.
Now, I couldn’t stand the Sound of Music as a kid, and I probably still can’t. So I’ve always steered cleared of anything remotely a Musical. Disney Aside, I just don’t really care for a film with singing as a major plot point. But La La Land somehow sucked me in. Maybe I’m just a dreamer at heart and the story got to me.
So why is this? How could I have been betrayed by my own musical preferences?
Ultimately, what aspects of La La Land made it so popular among pop culture?
I attribute much of La La Land’s trendiness to a combination of music, dance, and plot.
The original musical numbers and choreography make you just want to break out in dance and bust a move. The tunes have a catchy beat that are easy to follow. To be quite honest, I just felt like dancing after I watched La La Land.
The musical numbers are not just used for singing and dancing; they help carry the story along. The music is part of the plot. For example, the opening of the films starts with the classic “Another Day of Sun,” which serves to set the movie up with setting and characters.
Ultimately the film is a love story but without the cheesy ending. Each of the main characters are going through their personal struggles to achieve their dreams of stardom in Los Angeles, while their two lives become ever more entangled.
This is a movie for the dreamers and people who want to believe in love. So maybe that’s why I got sucked into the trap. Because deep down, I’m a dreamer staring up at the stars thinking of what I want to achieve.
It’s fair to say lots of people are dreamers. By showing the characters going their own struggles, we as the audience, can relate to the characters. Yes lots of people migrate to LA to go pursue their dreams; but, the film doesn’t show the success as easily as people would like in their personal lives.
The film feels like it has a slightly long run time towards the end as it warps up; but, it doesn’t quite give you the cheesy ending. Well, it does, but not really. You’ll have to watch it if you want to know what I mean.
Was it worth the Oscars it received?
Ultimately I believe La La Land should have garnished some accolades but I’m not entirely certain it should have been so heavily awarded. Sure I get the music and sound nods at the Oscars, but Costume Design or Cinematography? Come on! Where is Hollywood even going these days?
Frankly, I’m astonished by the success at the awards. You can argue it was original and that’s why it won so many awards. But I think it goes down to the points I highlighted earlier.
The catchy musical numbers that pushed the plot along to tell the story about two dreamers, who become star-crossed lovers is what ultimately makes the film. This in turn resonates with more audiences to cultivate popularity and success.
Ultimately La La Land is an ode to LA, an ode to the dreamers.