REVIEW: Baby Driver

By Declan Flahive

Baby (Ansel Elgort) is a talented getaway driver who relies on the beat of his killer soundtrack to be on top of his game to evade the authorities. Stuck on the dark side of the tracks, it takes finding love in the form of Lily James’ character, Deborah, to leave his criminal underworld life behind.

From the creator of the Three Flavours Cornetto trilogy, comes Baby Driver. The director Edgar Wrights past work includes Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, The Worlds End and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. Throughout all his works there has been a visual-comedy style he continuously utilises. In Baby Driver this has been brilliantly exploited. At many points throughout the film the beat of the music matches the movement you see before your eyes, whether that be in the form of Baby simply walking down the street, or through the manoeuvres he takes during a car chase. This synchronisation gives the film a musical aspect, one which a West End lover would appreciate. Wright toyed with this idea back in 2003, as the same concept of a getaway driver singing along to music as he waits for a group of bank robbers can be seen in Blue Song – Mint Royale, which was also directed by Edgar Wright.

The quality of the soundtrack and the stellar cast help Baby Driver pull off such a daring experiment of cinema. With the likes of Jamie Foxx, Ansel Elgort, Jon Hamm, Lily James and Kevin Spacey (playing Kevin Spacey) on-screen, with the mastermind of Edgar Wright behind the wheel it was always going to be a promising movie. The soundtrack resonates with the audience in its diverse and classic selection, I continued to listen to the playlist on Spotify for weeks after watching the movie.

Baby Driver does feel as if the studio has diluted and restricted Wrights style to garner wider appeal, an understandable tactic from a business point of view, especially considering the large budget ($34 million) which clearly worked with the film taking in $225.9 million at the Box Office. This can be seen through the decrease in visual comedy which is present in Wrights previous work, such as Scott Pilgrim and Hot Fuzz. Overall, it’s a great piece of cinema from one of Britain’s most exciting directors.