Baby Driver – There is perhaps no one better at taking a tired genre and breathing fresh life into it than director Edgar Wright, who is most famous for his own unique takes on zombie films (Shaun of the Dead) and buddy cop flicks (Hot Fuzz). With his latest movie, Baby Driver, Wright takes on one of the oldest tropes in cinema: the career criminal who vows to pull just one last job before retiring to a peaceful, “honest” life.
Baby Driver Review and Recap
Ansel Elgort stars as Baby, a talented young driver who became trapped in a life of crime when he got caught trying to steal a car belonging to Doc (Kevin Spacey), the film’s requisite criminal mastermind. Doc is impressed with Baby’s skill behind the wheel, and rather than take some sort of violent retribution, he locks the budding thief into a form of indentured servitude. In order to repay his debt, Baby is forced to work for Doc, acting as the getaway driver for the kingpin’s elaborately planned heists.
Along the way, we meet a colorful cast of characters, including Jon Bernthal, Jamie Foxx, and Jon Hamm as bank robbers in Doc’s employ. Hamm gives what may be the best performance of his career as Buddy, a former stock broker gone bad, who is equal parts charm and menace. We also meet Debora (Lily James), a beautiful waitress Baby falls in love with, fueling his desire to escape from his life of crime.
Predictably, that escape is not easy, as Doc is reluctant to let Baby go, even after his debt is paid. As Baby struggles to find a way to run off with his newfound love, things begin to go very wrong. This leads to a series of tense conversations, thrilling action sequences, and even some surprisingly heartfelt moments.
And then there is the music. Perhaps the most unique aspect of the film is the fact that Baby suffers from tinnitus. In order to drown out the resulting ringing in his ears, he listens to music constantly. For much of the film, the audience hears whatever song baby is jamming out to at any given moment. Wright uses this premise to great effect, often timing the on-screen action to the beat of the music. This makes for one of the most unique, original, and downright stylish films of the year.
With its all-star cast, adrenaline-pumping action, and one of the best soundtracks in recent memory, Baby Driver proves once again that Edgar Wright can do no wrong.
Characters and cast of Baby Driver include:
Baby – Ansel Elgort (The Fault in our Stars, Carrie, Divergent, Insurgent)
Griff – Jon Bernthal (The Wolf of Wall Street, The Ghost Writer, The Accountant, Sicario, Show Me a Hero, Fury, The Walking Dead)
Buddy – Jon Hamm (Mad Men, The Town, 30 Rock, Million Dollar Arm, Keeping Up with the Joneses, Minions)
Darling – Eiza Gonzalez (From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series, True Love)
Barista – Michael Howard
Debora – Lily James (Wrath of the Titans, War & Peace, Cinderella, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Downton Abbey, Burnt)
Street Preacher – Morgan Brown (The Nice Guys, Atlanta, Get Dead)
Doc – Kevin Spacey (American Beauty, House of Cards, Elvis & Nixon, Margin Call, Pay It Forward, L. A. Confidential, The Usual Suspects)
Joseph – CJ Jones (White Space, Lincoln Heights, Cold Case)
Bats – Jamie Foxx (Django Unchained, Collateral, Ray, Annie, Ali, The Kingdom, The Soloist, White House Down)