La La Land Review

Having heard all the positive thoughts of people about this movie, and with a clutch of Academy Award (Oscars) nominations to back them all up, I decided to take the future Mrs Judson to see this apparently musical treat.

How wrong can the reviewers and movie-goers of this world be? The answer to that is, ABSOLUTELY wrong. If this is what Oscars domination looks like, then please god help the academy because it is clearly in dire trouble.

The music is distinctly poor, and a plot line seems very difficult to develop as the script wanders aimlessly from one point to another, with no explanation as to why, or how?

The image that this film is sold on is one of the characters Mia and Seb dancing as the character, played by the entirely wooden Ryan Gosling, walks his love interest to her car after a party.

Coming to the scene in question you expect this to be the most endearing scene of the whole film, instead what you are presented with is two ambling characters shuffling along, trying to convince the audience that they are madly in love, but the dancing is frankly badly choreographed, and terribly executed, Craig Revel-Horwood would have an absolute field day.

There is no spark, or real magnetism between Seb and Mia, played by the thoroughly unconvincing Emma Stone, and you certainly don’t care about any of the characters, this movie has been said to be appreciated by certain movie traditionalists, I honestly can’t imagine how?

Frankly the script is absolute tripe, the plot, if you can find one, is an absolute nonsense, the dancing is not up to scratch, and the whole thing relies on the sort of music that isn’t for this sort of film, at one point there is a party by the poolside of a nice big house, with a band, including Gosling’s character, that are trying to sing an 80’s classic, all they succeed in doing is murdering it.

The plus side, there is one scene when you see Gosling in another band, who have sold out a gig, and they do one decent tune, and there is a bit of Hollywood magic in a scene when Seb and Mia go flying around a room, with a backdrop of a night sky with a million stars, but that’s it.

The ending is very flat, as it transports you forward five years, and leaves you wondering what has actually happened, I think you’re asked to believe that, after a totally unconvincing audition five years before, Stone’s character has now become some sort of Hollywood A-Lister, just because she is offered free coffee’s where she used to work, then goes home to her husband (not Gosling’s character) and daughter.

What does appear more sure is that Gosling’s character has at last achieved his dream of mediocrity, owning a jazz club, since they went their separate ways, although this too, and exactly what happened to loves young dream, is very open for debate.

This movie does have its place, unfortunately it won’t be in my Blu-Ray collection, and if, as is expected, it cleans up at the Oscars, then that just goes to show what films like Titanic showed before it, that Hollywood’s back-slapping night isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, and definitely isn’t all about talent.

This movie is, in my humble opinion, a complete waste of time and money to go and see.

How To Be Brave Book Launch

Debut novelist Louise Beech has launched her first book How To Be Brave at Hull Central Library last night.

The delightful new girl on the potential best-seller block was supported by several friends and family, including her daughter who provided the inspiration behind the novel, and her husband as well as publisher Karen Sullivan from Orenda Books.

The book, which has been greeted with critical acclaim, tells the true story of the authors grandfather’s survival in a lifeboat drifting at sea for 50 incredible days, which saw 12 of the 14 occupants who clambered into it not make it home in 1943.

This book though offers up a second true story, based around her own struggle to get her daughter to take her life-saving diabetic medication, by promising her a story before she would take it.

Add into the mix a story of a book bringing family members back together after decades apart and you have a true fairy-tale like story of epic proportions which must see this book gain the success it surely deserves.

Speaking personally I must say I’ve known Louise for some years now through her involvement with Hull Truck Theatre and the fact that, like me, she is also a playwright, and you can trust me when I say that nobody deserves the success she is enjoying now more than her.

With her effervescent personality, her winning smile and her magnificent writing she has a definite star quality about her that just exudes lovability and star quality.

When she was asked where she saw this leading in a year from now our delightfully bubbly center of earned attention joked about going to Hollywood, but it did leave me wondering if that might be the next stop for the girl from the next UK City of Culture, let’s see what happens next!!

Louise Beech Book Signing

Photos kindly supplied by Jerome Whittingham at Photomoments

Twitter: @photomoments