I dread musicals. I find the artificial shifts from regular activity to bizarre song and dance numbers jarring. And I don’t like the usual strained ‘lyrics’.
La La Land was different. The opening number reminded me of ‘Summer Holiday‘. Bonkers, but captivating.
The story is surprisingly well-crafted for a musical. The song and dance pieces are wonderful with only a couple of mediocre exceptions. But even those are sufficiently compatible with the ‘regular’ movie parts that they get away with it.
For me La La Land is oddly contradictory: a musical movie I liked that combines a strangely real story in an artificially bright and enjoyably unreal world.
Even if musicals and LA solipsism aren’t your thing, La La Land has enough emotion and spectacle to make it unmissable.