‘Baby Driver’ perfectly blends hot tunes, hot rubber

'Baby Driver' perfectly blends hot tunes, hot rubber

Edgar Wright’s ‘Baby Driver’ blends car chases, excellent actors chewing scenery, and a mind-blowing soundtrack into a movie so enjoyable I’ve seen it in theaters twice since its June 28. release. To be completely honest, writing this review makes me tempted to pick up tickets for a third go-around.

Cursed with a strong case of tinnitus after a childhood accident, Baby (Ansel Elgort, hopping off the burning hulk of ‘Divergent’ to actually act) spends his waking hours listening to a wide spectrum of music on his vast collection of iPods. While listening to said music, he possesses an almost supernatural ability to steal and drive cars quickly.

Unfortunately, somewhere along the line Baby made the mistake of crossing Doc (Kevin Spacey), a mysterious kingpin who only sets up heists with different crews each time out of superstition. The only common thread throughout his crime spree is putting Baby behind the wheel.

The film sets us up with a few jobs to get the feel of the world, Baby being forced to drive for criminals exhibiting just enough expertise to be dangerous but also insane enough to be worrisome.

Among the more sane criminals are lovebirds Buddy (Jon Hamm, absolutely stealing this movie as his character grows) and Darling (Eiza Gonzålez), followed by the equally hilarious and terrifying Bats (Jamie Foxx). Just as Baby gains a glimmer of hope that he is about to finish his last job for Doc, a beautiful diner waitress named Debora (Lily James) walks into his life.

Run the Jewels, Bob & Earl, The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Barry White and many more are represented throughout the film as the soundtrack seems to interweave itself with reality. Every gear shift and gun shot is carefully edited to be in time with whichever song is currently playing.

Big budget movies as of late have been quietly filming city and rural locations in and around Atlanta, GA while trying to pass them off as other parts of the country (or even the world). Edgar Wright goes the complete opposite direction, making Atlanta almost a character in its own right.

Each car chase is planned out to such detail they can be mapped on a map of the city and actually make some sense as to why Baby would take the routes he takes.

‘Baby Driver’ is pure, distilled car chase movie. It won’t win any Oscars, it won’t change how films are made, but it is still one hell of a ride. This is what happens when you let big actors play with their toys without the pretense of aiming for the Academy greats. Jamie Foxx goes full Looney Toons insane, Kevin Spacey plays the snarky mob boss the way he wants to play and Jon Hamm…

I’ll let you find out what Hamm’s playing around with.

Go see this movie.

5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)