I was super excited to finally be able to see this movie because I had been waiting since it was in theaters. I used to go to the theaters all the time, but with the rising cost I usually don’t venture out unless it’s something that I really really want to see and I couldn’t’ justify it for this movie. I was content waiting and figured that I would either rent it on PSN or wait for it on HBO. Luckily my wait wasn’t a long one, so keep reading to see if this movie was worth the wait.
Set in modern times, I didn’t get that vibe from the promo’s but I rolled with it, Mia, played by Emma Stone, is trying to do what everyone in Hollywood is trying to do and that’s become a famous actress. She’ll go to audition after audition while she works her day job as a barista. Mia will find out that this is an uphill climb that really isn’t working out all that well for her even though she’s doing everything right. She’s never right for the part and she really just doesn’t fit into the whole Hollywood stereotype thing. Then there’s Sebastian, played by Ryan Gosling. He’s a jazz musician in a dying industry as no one really wants to listen to classic jazz anymore. He isn’t having it though as he works on trying to open up his own club which doesn’t exactly go as planned. Both Sebastian and Mia will meet and fall in love before the pressures of Hollywood will pull them apart in this musical. The question is though, will love conquer all and will everyone get the happy Hollywood ending they deserve?
I really hate saying this, but 20 minutes into the movie I knew that I was going to absolutely without a doubt hate this movie. By the end of the movie, I don’t think I could have hated it anymore. I don’t see what was so hugely special about this movie that everyone went crazy over it. For a musical, the singing is just awful and the story line is just a clichéd one. I can’t say that there was a single scene in this movie that I actually enjoyed and didn’t cringe at. I tried to like this movie, I really did especially since I had heard such great things about it, but it feels like everyone was watching a different movie than I was because this movie just didn’t have it. The movie tried to mix this old timey feel with modern times and it became annoying really quick. Just as you were getting into this old timey Singing in the Rain type vibe a cell phone would go off, pulling you right out of the moment and giving you a WTF moment. Not to mention the fact that this musical was really missing it’s mark with the music and the singing itself. Both the music and the singing were subpar and really took away from the movie as a whole.
That Damn Ending! Not only do I have a strong dislike for the movie, but I have a strong dislike for the ending. It was intentionally an unhappy one, and not one in the same respect as Moulin Rouge where it ended that way for a reason. This movie ended in a way where basically everyone got what they wanted but really didn’t. An “alternate” version was shown as a tease and then quickly rectified as the movie ended on a bittersweet note. I’m not saying that the ending would have improved my dislike for this movie, but it would have helped just a little and maybe put a smile on my face instead of having me roll my eyes because someone thought it would be more artistic and sad to end the movie they way it was ended.
There’s no doubt about it that both Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling have great on screen chemistry. This is not only seen in this movie, which is difficult to believe, but also in other movies they have both starred in. Needless to say though, these actors weren’t fit for their respective roles and it make the whole movie awkward. I have to say that for two actors who I have a great amount of respect for and as much as I enjoy their work, they did not make this movie any easier to watch as they were both wrong for the roles of Mia and Sebastian.
An Oscar for Best Actress? Really? I know the race for best actress this past Oscar season was a little lackluster because Natalie Portman was nominated for Jackie which was just a huge failure, you can read why I think that here, but seriously how the hell did Emma Stone win for best actress? Granted, besides Jackie I didn’t see Ruth Negga in Loving, Isabelle Huppert in Elle, or Meryl Streep in Florence Foster Jenkins, but seriously out of all of these actress’s, Emma Stone was the best? In that respect I think Emma Stone is a great actress, but this was definitely not the role that should have been her first Oscar win.
Overall I give this movie a 1 out of 5.
If you’re a huge fan of musicals like myself, then please do yourself a favor and skip this movie. From beginning to end, that damn ending, it’s just horrible and not even worthy to be compared to the great musicals of any time. The story is a clichéd one, the music is bad (who knew a musical had to have good music), the singing is off, and the acting as much as it tries to work just doesn’t. I’m sorry, but if you’re looking for a good musical to watch I would say try watching Singing in the Rain, Moulin Rouge, The Phantom of the Opera, Mamma Mia!, or Rent. You’ll have a much better experience watching these movies and you’ll come out not feeling like you just waisted two hours of your life.