Baby Driver is heading at full throttle into ODEON cinemas on the 28th June, get ready to kick off the summer at high speed!
Meticulous filmmaking, oddball characters, breathtaking car chases and mashed genres put together into a uniquely madcap mix. Baby Driver is, without a doubt, a complete blast. Edgar Wright’s music-driven cops-and-robbers romance is as captivating as a newly polished sports car. And like a car, you need the best pieces to build and drive a great film.
Let’s have a look at the manufacturing of Baby Driver and why we believe the film has all its parts in the right place.
A car doesn’t run without an engine and a film doesn’t exist without the genius of a director. Edgar Wright has already gained a reputation as of ‘one of the most interesting directors of his generation’ and has garnered mainstream attention with his previous films Shaun of Dead, Hot Fuzz and The World’s End.
Baby Driver is his most ambitious work to date: a romantic heist comedy propelled from scene to scene with the director’s unique and humorous cinematic style and impressive action scenes combined with amazing music.
To craft Baby Driver, Wright called on what he refers to as the ‘holy trinity’ of 90s heist films, namely Point Break, Reservoir Dogs and Heat. Take the mind-blowing editing from Kathyrin Bigelow, add the art of close-ups and brilliant punch-lines from Tarantino, and finish it with a touch of elaborate actions scenes from Michael Mann: with these artistic mentors, Baby Driver’s already got plenty of film-geek certification for us.
However Edgar Wright not only cares about great films, but also about genre filmmaking. What makes this particular action film so distinct from the movies that inspired it is Baby Driver’s very daring musical element. A genre mash-up that’s part heist drama, part musical romance, and will make you feel Fast and Furious in La La Land...
Taking the helm (or in this case the wheel) as the film’s lead character is the baby-face rising star Ansel Elgort (The Divergent Series, The Fault in Our Stars). Having risen to prominence mainly playing crying soppy teenagers in films mostly for crying and soppy teenagers (we’re joking, we loved The Fault in Our Stars...), Ansel Elgort is a bold bet as tough kid in this gritty crime film. But he nails it, and more importantly, he looks damn cool in those shades chilling behind the wheel of his Subaru.
At only 22 years old, Ansel Elgort is a rising star with real Hollywood swagger, able to pull off the role with style and prove himself as one of the best actor from his generation. It looks like the baby is becoming an adult. Well, more or less... His secret weapon to prepare for the role? Learning how to drive in New York’s mental traffic and playing for hours Grand Theft Auto.
If you need stability, you must rely on a great supporting cast. Kevin Spacey, Jamie Foxx, John Hamm and Lily James are the four ‘tyres’ who help drive the film to such great success.
Two times Oscar winner Spacey plays Doc, a domineering crime boss who favours Baby as getaway driver for his heists. Doc’s accomplices include Buddy, a terrifying thief played by Jon ‘Mad Man’ Hamm, and a mentally imbalanced crook named Bats, played by Jamie Foxx (who with no doubt will bring swagger, menace and muscle to the role). Baby’s love interest Deborah is played by Downton Abbey and Cinderalla star Lily James, bringing innocence and sweetness into this criminal world.
Ok, we all know that driving slowly saves lives, and we don’t encourage any of these high speed shenanigans. But let’s be honest, how exciting is hitting the gas? And in Baby Driver it happens a lot....! Even the quick taste of the film’s hot pursuits the trailer gives you is enough to set your senses tingling at how special these car chases will be.
A lot of action sequences you’ll see in the cinema these days will covered with multiple layers of CGI, but with Baby Driver’s chases, Edgar Wright has aimed to get back to basics. They’ve been shot for real on the streets, freeways and alleys of Atlanta rather than against a green screen . The crew also used some clever rigs, including one which allowed the stunt driver to sit on top of Baby’s flashy Subaru while Ansel Elgort acted out the driving inside it, getting the star in the midst of the action. It sounds like a difficult filming process, but it’s paid off and Baby Driver gives us some of the most dynamic and visceral car chase sequences we’ve seen in years.
Why is that important? Because you need to know how fast and far you can go. It’s going to be a rough film, with Baby getting mixed up with some seriously violently characters, so it would have been quite disappointing if the film had wussed out on showing some gritty and visceral action.
Get ready to be thrilled, not only by a bit of violence but also by a witty sense of humour and a good dose of romance brought by the authentic love affair between Baby and Deborah, that makes the film even more adult without necessarily being naughty.
You can’t plan a road trip without planning the tunes that will keep you going on the way. Fans of Edgar Wright will already know that music plays an important part of his movies, and is always thoughtfully aligned with what’s on screen. With Baby Driver, Wright’s gone full out on this, filling the movie with classic rock tracks: Queen, Blur, Young M.C., T. Rex and The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion all match the energetic action.
But these tracks aren’t just there for the sake of it – they’re linked to a key part of the story, as Baby’s tinnitus means he listens to music while driving to drown out the hum he’d otherwise hear. It’s not about having one song to the next but using them as a narrative device that helps to build a choreographic action film.
Baby Driver’ follows the adventures of getaway driver Baby, who has a ringing in his ears and plays music to quiet it – which makes him the best in the business.
Driving to his custom playlist, he’s laser-focused on the road and able to get out of any jam. He wants to escape his life of crime and bring the girl of his dreams with him, but his boss forces him to take one last job that could cost him everything.
Take the wheel for ‘Baby Driver’, a high-octane chase thriller from Edgar Wright, the acclaimed director of ‘Hot Fuzz’ and ‘Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World’.