Saturday, December 17, 2016

La La Land

Continuing our quest to see all of the 2016 Oscar nominated films, Sharon and I went to La La Land at the remodeled Century Arden 14 and XD. Over the last couple of years, we have tried to guess in December and early January which films will be nominated. La La Land is on a number of lists as a possible Best Picture nominee.

The film stars Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone and John Legend. It is the third film to feature Gosling and Stone as lovers, following Crazy, Stupid, Love and Gangster Squad. It was written and directed by Damien Chapelle who wrote and directed Whiplash. The plot follows a musician and an aspiring actress who meet and fall in love in Los Angeles.

The movie was filmed in more than 60 Los Angeles locations, including downtown trolley, houses in the Hollywood Hills, Griffith Observatory, Angels Flight, Colorado Street Bridge, Pasadena, Grand Central Market and Watts Tower. The opening pre-credits sequence was filmed on a closed-off portion EZ pass ramp of the Los Angeles highway connecting the 105 freeway to the 110 leading to Downtown Los Angeles.

Sharon liked the film more than I did. She gave it an 8 of a scale of 10 and has been talking about going to see it again. Sharon had me download the soundtrack on Apple Music. As romantic musical comedy-drama, the movie is definitely a throwback to a simpler time.

From my perspective, the film does a great job of taking advantage of Los Angeles as a location. I am also fascinated by the fact that Gosling learned tap dancing and piano for his role. La La Land is probably going to be a strong contender for best picture...

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