“If you don’t see me again, it’s because I’m dead…”
Is Edgar Wright the new Tarantino? Oh shit… Johnson’s finally lost it. I know it’s a bold statement but hear me out. They both helped to revolutionise flagging genres by pulling from their influences to make something unique. They both manage to attract A-list stars to projects they would never normally touch and they both know their way around a soundtrack…
If you rabidly disagree but haven’t seen Baby Driver yet, then please watch it and then revisit my hypothesise again. While QT flounders with daft, overblown nonsense like The Hateful Eight, Edgar Wright has released a film that draws the best elements of Tarantino, the Coen Brothers and pop culture generally to produce Baby Driver.
Baby (Ansel Elgort) is a get away driver who uses his skills to pay back a debt to crime boss Doc (Kevin Spacey). Joining the two on these dangerous missions are a revolving cast of characters including femme fatale Darling (Eiza Gonzalez), her lover Buddy (Jon Hamm) and the psychotic Bats (Jamie Foxx). Rounding off the cast is Lily James as the all american girl Debora.
Once again, Wright has assembled an eclectic and interesting cast who all seem to be having a whole load of fun. Spacey is cool and sinister as always and Hamm impresses as the unpredictable Buddy. Jamie Foxx’s Bats is a little to close to Motherfucker Jones for comfort and for this reason it is difficult to take him seriously but Elgort and James are a revelation. The former uses all of his dance training to give the early sequences a choreographed feel and Lily James is mesmerising as his partner in and out of crime.
Edgar Wright uses the soundtrack masterfully, to the point where some parts of Baby Driver actually feel like a musical. I’ve never much been one for car chases, Blues Brothers aside, but there are some beauties here and this is rendered all the more impressive by the lack of CGI. This gives the action sequences a more raw and exciting feel and it also gives the actors more to play with.
Baby Driver is stylish, exciting and fun and beneath the revving of the engine, there is also a heart beating somewhere under the hood. Edgar Wright is quite simply one of the best directors working in film today.