La La Land: Bitterweet Eye Candy


Dane Dorius, Academics and Arts Editor, Ostensibly

La La Land is a music romance starring Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone. Ryan Gosling plays Sebastian, a jazz pianist who aspires to bring jazz back to the mainstream and run his own club, and Emma Stone plays Mia, a struggling actress.

The movie, like its characters, take the imagery, styles, and dreams of old and fuse it with modern flair and sensibilities. Mia’s a barista when not auditioning. A jazz club Sebastian frequented became a “samba topas” place. The film blends together sets, sounds, and aesthetics from all eras of film and music, resulting in something that feels simultaneously timeless and fresh.

The cinematography is incredible, showing the feelings and emotions of the characters as much as the music and acting do. The musical segments are catchy, beautiful to watch, and leave you with a giant grin on your face or tears in your eyes. The story, while using elements from films past, still creates a fantastic whole that’s bittersweet and thought-provoking.

If you have any interest in movies, I would wholeheartedly recommend it. Even if you’re not a huge fan of romance films, the cinematography and artistic techniques utilized will still hold your attention. If 2016 brought you down, then this film is a sweet piece of eye candy that’ll perk you up again.