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La La Land (2016)

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While navigating their careers in Los Angeles, a pianist and an actress fall in love while attempting to reconcile their aspirations for the future.

Director:

Damien Chazelle

Writer:

Damien Chazelle
Popularity
200 ( 56)
Top Rated Movies #231 | Won 6 Oscars. Another 229 wins & 264 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ryan Gosling ... Sebastian
Emma Stone ... Mia
Amiée Conn ... Famous Actress
Terry Walters ... Linda (Coffee Shop Manager)
Thom Shelton ... Coffee Spiller
Cinda Adams ... Casting Director (First Audition)
Callie Hernandez ... Tracy
Jessica Rothe ... Alexis
Sonoya Mizuno ... Caitlin
Rosemarie DeWitt ... Laura
J.K. Simmons ... Bill
Claudine Claudio ... Karen (Waitress)
Jason Fuchs ... Carlo
D.A. Wallach D.A. Wallach ... '80s Singer
Trevor Lissauer ... Valet
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Storyline

Aspiring actress serves lattes to movie stars in between auditions and jazz musician Sebastian scrapes by playing cocktail-party gigs in dingy bars. But as success mounts, they are faced with decisions that fray the fragile fabric of their love affair, and the dreams they worked so hard to maintain in each other threaten to rip them apart. Written by Eirini

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Here's to the fools who dream.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Hong Kong

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 December 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La La Land See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$881,104, 9 December 2016, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$151,101,803

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$446,092,357
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS (DTS: X)| Dolby Atmos

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Damien Chazelle: [song] The song "When I Wake" by Justin Hurwitz was first featured in the movie Whiplash (2014), with the two main characters listening to the song while out on a date. The same thing happens in La La Land as the song is featured in the background while Sebastian and Mia are talking about jazz - exactly the same topic the two characters from Whiplash were discussing. See more »

Goofs

When Sebastian goes to check on the oven after the argument with Mia, the smoke rises out of the oven slowly and almost horizontally, a sign that fake smoke was placed inside. If the oven had actually started smoking due to extreme heat overcooking the food, the smoke would rise vertically and extremely fast upon being opened. See more »

Quotes

Sebastian: Alright, I remember you. And I'll admit I was a little curt that night.
Mia: "Curt?"
Sebastian: Okay, I was an asshole. I can admit that. But requesting "I Ran" from a serious musician, it's just, it's too far.
Mia: My Lord, did you just say "a serious musician?"
Sebastian: I don't think so.
Mia: Can I borrow what you're wearing?
Sebastian: Why?
Mia: Because I have an audition next week. I'm playing a serious firefighter.
Sebastian: So you're an actress? I thought you looked familiar. Have I seen you in anything?
Mia: Uhh, the coffee shop on the Warner Brothers ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Summit Entertainment logo has an old-time variant where it looks like a matte painting of a mountain in a box and the word "Summit" above it. See more »


Soundtracks

Start a Fire
Music and Lyrics by John Legend (as John Stephens), Marius De Vries, Angelique Cinelu, and Justin Hurwitz
Performed by John Legend
John Legend appears courtesy of Columbia Records/Get Out Our Dreams, Inc.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An unashamedly romantic musical, infused with intense charisma and devastating emotion
10 October 2016 | by neverever121See all my reviews

I was interested in seeing this film because not only am I a sucker for a good musical, but I'll admit to being a big fan of Ryan Gosling and I was intrigued to see what the director of Whiplash would do with a musical picture to make it fresh and unique. So when I had the chance to see a late-planned viewing at the London Film Festival, I jumped at the chance (FYI, Ryan Gosling came to the screening as a surprise post- film Q&A attendee despite not appearing at the Headline Gala the night before so I was chuffed!)

The premise of the story is that Stone is a young actress who has moved to LA to wait tables while auditioning to try and 'make it', while Gosling is a jazz purist ("Anyone who doesn't like jazz just doesn't have the right...context", he insists) who plays the piano in bars to make a living and dreams of opening his own Jazz bar. Or to put it succinctly - "Two young artists meet and fall in love while chasing their dreams". The musical flows thematically from first love to heartbreak and every other emotion between, with great music throughout.

The most impressive thing about the film, for me, is just how daringly it dances between the old-fashioned "Singing' In The Rain" style of musical, and a bolder, modern style. The song numbers are great (the opening number received a round of applause in my viewing) and are an undoubted homage to classic musicals - a thoughtful mixture of old school dance numbers you'd expect from a musical in the 50s, and emotionally-wrenching ballads that hit you where it hurts; there is one particular sequence toward the end of the film which is a real gut-punch.

Stylistically the film skirts this same line; the film again looks and acts like a classic musical but frequently we see low-key reminders that this is modern day; actresses using their iPhones, a video being seen on Youtube, etc to remind us that this is set in the present day. If we didn't have these reminders, the visuals would almost have you thinking that this is the 1950s. The cinematography is beautiful and overall the film is visually stunning. There is also no doubt that it is wonderfully directed, with the same masterful control of pace and tension that we come to expect from Damien Chazelle thanks to Whiplash.

Gosling in particular is absolutely terrific, with a typically sardonic wit throughout. At the start of the film when his sister says she's worried about him as life seems to have him on the ropes, he responds "I wanna be on the ropes. I'm just letting life think it has me and then before you know it - BAM. It's a classic rope-a-dope". His delivery of these sorts of lines can't be matched, and it's easy to see why the producers said in the post-film Q&A that he was the person they wanted for the role in their wildest dreams. It's a role made for him with tons more of the above kind of lines. But more than that, Gosling captures a real emotional intensity at the film's emotional breaking points, more specifically in the sequence towards the end of the film that I mentioned earlier. He manages to convey such convincing emotion without so much as a word.

I'd feel bad if I didn't also praise Emma Stone, who has probably never been better. She has wonderful emotional range, from the ecstatic highs of love to the tearful, painful lows.

In terms of the Gosling/Stone films, this is by far the best. Their undoubted chemistry is given the full spotlight in this film with freedom to explore said chemistry without restriction.

The film is ultimately everything it had the potential to be - an unashamedly romantic musical, infused not only with great song and dance numbers but with intense emotion and charisma from Gosling/Stone, wonderful visuals and a unique pacing and tension from Chazelle. Oh, and it's hilarious throughout too. A genuine achievement - must be one of the best films I've seen in a long while. I'm annoyed I'll have to wait so long to see it again, frankly.

Will surely win multiple Oscars and other awards.


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