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WHAT'S NEW AT THE MOVIES?
Edgar Wright puts pedal to the metal, delivering a genre-spin that’s colossal entertainment.
We’ve seen explosive bank robbing capers before, but we’ve never seen them like this: music driven, syncopated and compellingly self-aware. Yes, there’s a backstory, but the fuel for this movie is adrenaline and, for the most part, that keeps the engine running truly fast and furious.
Baby (a cool and charming Ansel Elgort) made a mistake a while back. He’s still paying off Kevin Spacey’s Doc, the mastermind behind a continuing series of Atlanta-area robberies. Tapped for his remarkable skills behind the wheel, Baby gets the thieves away from the scene but, thrillingly for action fans, not far from harm’s way. Still, we know Baby’s heart isn’t in it. Losing himself in his mix tapes, this is still a kid who’s haunted by his past and devoted to the better people in his life, including, but not limited to, his foster dad and gorgeous new girl friend.
Elgort balances the mysteries of Baby nicely and he’s surrounded by a game group of big name co-stars, including a scruffy Jon Hamm and batty Jamie Foxx. But this is not an actor’s movie: it’s a stylistic stunner, big, noisy and exhilarating. There’s an attempt at explaining why Baby is such an enigma. Could he possibly be autistic? A savant? Hints are made, but Wright doesn’t seem to have the patience for exploring any of that too deeply. And God knows there’s nothing more than surface for any of the other people who show up on the screen, either. The piece, as a whole, could have used an edit or two more, and, to me, a tone down on the audio. Some of the dialogue sounds over modulated and incomprehensible.
But, bouncing off of an irresistible soundtrack and boasting some super action, who cares? This is a movie about sensation and, for that, it’s pretty sensational.