Baby Driver: Push The Throttle Down, Turn The Music Up

Baby Driver is a 2017 action film written and directed by Edgar Wright and stars Ansel Elgort, Kevin Spacey, Lily James, Jon Bernthal, Eiza González, Jon Hamm and Jamie Foxx. The film follows the life of getaway driver Baby who is coerced to work for a kingpin to carry out one last big robbery. Yes, his name is Baby and he’s a driver.


Alright man, I’ll say it upfront. It’s Edgar Wright. It’ll take a lot to make me even mildly dislike an Edgar Wright joint. God damn it, he made one of my favorite films of all time with Hot Fuzz and you know that’s saying something when you go into his catalog of excellence. He’s just so much fun and always ON while making a film. I watched Fast 8 right. This is the film it wants to be but can’t. This is kind of mass appeal Drive would have loved to have had but couldn’t muster. It’s so much unbridled creativity and unpretentious love for the craft of filmmaking.

For all you Edgar Wright fans out there, I don’t need to tell you about his capabilities as a filmmaker. To all you newbies, I’d like to offer up a few nuggets of brilliance to keep your eyes peeled for which might increase your appreciation for this film and the man behind the camera. Please do notice the attention given to editing (how the story is constructed visually), the constant hum in the background and how all the action is always centered (Your eyes stay glued to the center of the screen when the action happens. You’ll see what he wants you to see because of how the scene is staged. Your eye will move from left to center to right and back to center again. Good directing does that to you). Once you do notice these things, you’ll realize that this film has a cavalcade of such deft touches one can spend a day unearthing. I wouldn’t ruin all of them.


The performances are often hilariously to the point with Jon Hamm, surprisingly, stealing the movie from under all the other A-list talent. His character has a fantastic journey and it stuck out to me so much more than the others (You’ll know it when you see it). Ansel (He’s so hot right now) Elgort is fantastic as the stoic but vulnerable Baby. Kevin Spacey is Spacey-ing it up like a mother. The female characters are a shade underwritten. I hate to ding something in the film but the female characters are just not fully-formed. Jamie Foxx’s Bats could end up being grating to a few viewers but rest assured Wright goes into his old bag of tricks (if you’ve seen his fake trailer for Grindhouse, you know what I mean) and provides a fitting end to his character.

The film’s primary plot is not about reinventing the wheel but it involves showing the audience the true power the wheel possesses when in the right hands. That is where the cast of characters come in. You know where the story is going but you don’t know how it is going to get there. The journey makes the destination and the destination itself has a nice little touch borrowed from the U.S. Postal Service and Dolly Parton. (You’ll know it when you see it).


There is so much more I want to go into but this film requires me to not spoil it for a fellow movie lover. I want people to enjoy it the way I did. I want every fan of film to be reduced to a giggling mess like I was while watching this massively entertaining labor of love. As an ultimate measure of how enjoyable this film is, I’ll share a personal anecdote. I damn near dragged a friend of mine to watch this film under the condition that I would pay for her tickets and wouldn’t receive her share of the money back if she were to not enjoy the film. I’m pleased to report that on top of receiving my money, she applauded as the end credits rolled.






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