If you’ve seen the recent Golden Globe Awards, you probably know that the big winner for the year is La La Land. A bit of trivia para pwede kang magpasikat dun sa chinichicks mong crush si Ryan Gosling: the movie actually now owns the record for most wins at the Globes with 7 awards. Lahat ng categories na nominated siya, siya yung nanalo. The lead actors of the movie, Emma Stone (arguably the most adorable set of eyes in Hollywood) and Ryan Gosling (abs na nagkatawang tao), nabbed the acting awards. The director Damien Chazelle (landi ng pangalan!) won for directing and screenplay. The movie got an award for the score and the song, and most importantly was named Best Motion Picture for the Musical or Comedy category.

Now you’re probably asking yourself, “Ano bang meron dito sa La La Land na to liban sa isang syllable na pinaulit-ulit?!” I think you’ll find that if you watch the movie, you’ll realize that all the awards and accolades that the movie is getting is actually well-deserved. I came in with the highest of expectations because of all the fanfare the film was getting and still came away impressed.

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The first thing you should know about it is that the movie is a musical. So if may aversion ka sa mga pelikulang biglang kakanta at sasayaw in the middle of the conversation, this movie might not be for you. But better yet, you can lighten up and give this movie a shot dahil wala naman pinagkaiba yung ginagawa nila sa ginagawa mong pagsayaw ng Milo Energy Gap ni James Reid sa banyo pag naliligo.

The second thing you should know is that it’s a love story between a struggling actress, Mia (Stone) and an uncompromising jazz musician, Sebastian (Gosling) set in the dreamy city that is Los Angeles. Together they set out to achieve their dreams but they soon realize that sometimes you have to give up something in order to get to where you want to be. The story sounds simple enough, right? The beauty of the movie is in how a simple love story like this was translated into film. I actually spent the first 20 minutes or so of the movie wondering to myself how it won so many awards kasi mukha namang ordinary lang e. The story actually plays out much in the same way you’d expect a typical love story would.

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But you see that’s the difference between a “story” and a “screenplay”. The screenplay is how you translate and express the story into film. It’s the witty dialogue, the actions, the expressions, and a lot of other things. And that’s where the movie shines the most. Making it into a musical was a clever move because it made a simple story much more interesting. The score is great and it harkens back to the golden age of Hollywood. Para siyang Frozen for adults in the sense that you’ll be singing the songs long after you’ve seen the movie. The movie has a lot of moments wherein maiisip mo “wow ang galing naman nito!” tulad nung nasa observatory and then all of a sudden nagsasayaw na sila sa kisame with all the stars. Alam mo naman na it’s all just special effects but it’s how they were able to use those special effects creatively and artistically to tell a story that sets them apart.

The lead actors are of course very talented but the screenplay gives them a lot to work with. In one scene you’d see Emma Stone doing quirky facial expressions but then 5 minutes later you’d see her doing sad, wistful, and longing expressions. And you’d see all that in her face as she sings which is actually harder than it sounds. Without having seen the other performances she was up against at the Globes, I was able to understand how she won. Napakita niya yung range niya as an actress e.

La La Land (2016) Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) and Mia (Emma Stone)

Ryan Gosling was also pretty good in this but I wouldn’t say that he did anything that stands out. He’s always been a good actor and has had a knack for choosing the right projects. But I guess the movie works so much more dahil may chemistry si Ryan Gosling at si Emma Stone e. Para silang yung Hollywood version ni John Lloyd at Bea in the sense na bagay sila pero hindi sila pero iniisip mo sana sila na lang kasi bagay sila. This is actually their third movie together and you can make the argument that they’re the closest thing to a love team that Hollywood has similar to the KathNiel’s and JaDine’s of the world. Their partnership just works.

May aaminin ako sa inyo guys pero sa atin atin lang to ah. I obviously love movies and watch enough of them to run a website like this, pero sa totoo lang may mga hindi ako pinapanuod kahit pa sinasabi nilang “pang-award”. Because truth be told, they don’t seem like they’re fun to watch and we only have so many hours in a day. I’m sure 12 Years a Slave is a good movie but I’ve never gotten around to watching it. Ang hirap e. Kailangan nasa tamang kundisyon ka para manuod ng movie tungkol sa lalaking inapi ng 12 years. So far hindi pa ko dumadating sa kundisyon na ganun.

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La La Land stands out in that sense because I think it might be the most accessible “award-worthy” movie I’ve seen in such a long-time. Hindi siya mabigat, hindi rin gaanong malalim, pero maganda pa rin e. Hindi mo kailangan ng extensive knowledge about the Holocaust or the Civil Rights movements nung 1960s for you to enjoy the movie and appreciate. It might be that rare movie that casual moviegoers and film critics agree on. Cheesy as it may sound, but it’s a movie that everyone can relate to because at the end of the day it’s a story about chasing after something or someone you love. Anyone who has ever dreamed of doing something, anyone who has ever failed at what they love, anyone who has ever loved someone and anyone who’s life somehow didn’t turn out the way they thought it would will find something to relate to in this movie. It’s a must-see.

5/5

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