New Jersey Stage 2017: Issue 6 - Page 20

petrolheads and cinephiles alike. Few things are as cinematic as a well staged car chase, and in recent decades we’ve seen very few well staged car chases. When its leading man isn’t strutting his stuff, either on foot or behind the wheel, Baby Driver begins to lag. Sadly Wright’s tal- ents as a director aren’t matched feels forced and awkward. More genuine are the scenes in which Baby is mocked for his obses- sion, as though Wright is draw- ing on his past life as a geek growing up in an era when you were considered a freak for in- dulging in less than mainstream pursuits - listening to music that’s too old, watching movies When its leading man isn’t strutting his stuff, either on foot or behind the wheel, Baby Driver begins to lag. by his writing skills, and the dia- logue is often cringe-worthy, a poor British imitation of Ameri- can street lingo that comes off as a second rate Tarantino knockoff. The characters are paper thin, especially Debora, yet another manic pixie male fantasy who seems to have no defining per- sonality beyond a knowledge of obscure music. The relation- ship between herself and Baby NJ STAGE 2017 - Vol. 4 No. 6 that are too weird, or reading books with too many words. If Baby Driver does a better job than La La Land of homaging the joys of the Hollywood musical, it unfortunately shares that film’s uncomfortable racial elements. Despite being set in Atlanta, a city where more than half the population is African-American, black faces are all too notice- ably largely absent. Only two get INDEX NEXT ARTICLE 20