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Musical Mondays Week 40 La La Land


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#21 tomspanks

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 08:49 AM

View Posttaylor anne photo, on 04 June 2018 - 08:29 AM, said:

The biggest "wtf???" moment though is actually why John Legend was positioned as a bad guy. I mean I know we can get into this "Ryan Gosling is a white man that wants to 'save' Jazz" later because that's an entire post in and of itself, but John Legend wasn't an asshole and he wasn't wrong. He tells Seb that Jazz is about the future and it's about being revolutionary but how can you be revolutionary if you're stuck in the past and the entire time I was like yeah wow he's right does Seb even understand what Jazz was created for or is he just a fanboy that could never truly understand the feelings the people are portraying through it? And lbr here John's song was amazing. It was stuck in my head the rest of the day yesterday after I watched this.


John Legend never came across as a villain to me and I don't think the movie was saying that either. I think at worst he seemed like a guy with a different perspective and I think we were supposed to notice the fact that he was trying to innovate and make jazz more accessible, unlike Seb whose dream was to open old timey jazz club. Neither are right or wrong, although I'd rather listen to John Legend sing, lol.

#22 taylor anne photo

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 08:49 AM

View PostSaraK, on 04 June 2018 - 08:44 AM, said:


The two of them are fantastic together. I really loved them in Crazy Stupid Love as well, and didn't really like that movie too much. They just have such a natural chemistry. I'm pretty much in to see the two of them flirt with each other in any setting.

Though, I wonder if that's part of the issue I have with this movie. The those two actors are a well known entity. They're always fantastic together, so the second their characters meet in the movie, it feels like they've known each other forever. Maybe that's just me, but I think that's a lot of 'we've seen these actors before' instead of 'two strangers connect over her teasing him'. Prior to Mia forcing him to play an 80's tune he apparently despises, they've literally just passed each other twice. How did she know it would get the intended reaction? She doesn't know he's a 'serious' musician. That feels like a move you do to someone you know it'd get a rise out of.

I'm still all in on Emma and Ryan, regardless of that. Seb may be awful (as I previously posted) but Ryan is so charismatic he sells it.

I took that as she overheard the fight with JK Simmons because she had walked in to hear him play, and then saw how disinterested he was compared to the rest of the cover band at the pool party. Her dancing to "I Ran" in such an exaggerated way was really funny to me and was kinda like the one time where I truly saw that this girl had a personality outside of just wanted to act.
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#23 taylor anne photo

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 08:52 AM

View Posttomspanks, on 04 June 2018 - 08:49 AM, said:

John Legend never came across as a villain to me and I don't think the movie was saying that either. I think at worst he seemed like a guy with a different perspective and I think we were supposed to notice the fact that he was trying to innovate and make jazz more accessible, unlike Seb whose dream was to open old timey jazz club. Neither are right or wrong, although I'd rather listen to John Legend sing, lol.

I guess I felt like the movie was saying that because Seb was our "hero" and he kept talking about how John Legend was The Worst and how he didn't understand anything yadda yadda. But then when we actually meet John fully and hear his side of things I was suddenly like oh right no Seb is a fuckin idiot. Like opening an old timey Jazz club is a cool idea and loving the music is all fine and good, but I guess it's how Seb goes about all this that makes it seem like John is the villain of this story when really it's Seb himself because he's got his head stuck up his ass.
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#24 sycasey 2.0

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 08:54 AM

View Posttomspanks, on 04 June 2018 - 08:49 AM, said:


John Legend never came across as a villain to me and I don't think the movie was saying that either. I think at worst he seemed like a guy with a different perspective and I think we were supposed to notice the fact that he was trying to innovate and make jazz more accessible, unlike Seb whose dream was to open old timey jazz club. Neither are right or wrong, although I'd rather listen to John Legend sing, lol.


Agreed. He's not the bad guy. He's an actual friend to Seb who offers him a job with a successful touring band and calls him out when he's being a jerk about things.

The movie has Seb as the lead character (or co-lead), but it's not necessarily saying he's always right. (Again, I think Chazelle's Whiplash provides some good context here.)

#25 Cameron H.

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 09:30 AM

View PostCam Bert, on 04 June 2018 - 05:18 AM, said:

Yes they aren't with each other, but because I never bought that it was true love between them to begin with, there is a slight "so" to it all.


But, for me, I don't feel like they're ever really in love to begin with - there was just the potential for love. At most, I would say there is a deep affection for one another because each of them provides something that the other one needs. Mia needs self-confidence; Seb needs humility. I feel like the movie is making a point about how even when we fail - whether that's in our professional or private lives - there's always the potential for growth which makes all experiences inherently "good." This is most clearly illustrated with Mia's one-woman play.

The way I interpreted the ending wasn't some kind of "Sliding Doors" scenario where this could have been their life had they done things differently. Given the same chance, they would have made all the same choices/mistakes. It becomes this crazy paradox. The ability to see this alternate reality is only possible because of the wisdom they've gained through the experience. There's no reason to listen to one more song because it doesn't change a thing.
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#26 SaraK

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 09:51 AM

View PostCameron H., on 04 June 2018 - 09:30 AM, said:


But, for me, I don't feel like they're ever really in love to begin with - there was just the potential for love. At most, I would say there is a deep affection for one another because each of them provides something that the other one needs. Mia needs self-confidence; Seb needs humility. I feel like the movie is making a point about how even when we fail - whether that's in our professional or private lives - there's always the potential for growth which makes all experiences inherently "good." This is most clearly illustrated with Mia's one-woman play.

The way I interpreted the ending wasn't some kind of "Sliding Doors" scenario where this could have been their life had they done things differently. Given the same chance, they would have made all the same choices/mistakes. It becomes this crazy paradox. The ability to see this alternate reality is only possible because of the wisdom they've gained through the experience. There's no reason to listen to one more song because it doesn't change a thing.


Completely agree

Its easy to say 'we should have done things this way' but their whole core desires also didn't fit well. Mia wants the world of Hollywood - filming anywhere the wind takes her, new projects, an open ended future - where as Seb wants a very specific, localized dream - he wants a jazz club in a specific spot in LA. They want to support each other, and their desires compliment each other in a way, but not really in a sustainable way.

I think its an interesting take on the idea that you can deeply care for someone and still not be the right person for them. A lot of movies tend to tout 'Love can overcome anything!', which isn't true.

#27 Fister Roboto

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 10:20 AM

I'm curious what y'all think: whose fantasy is the dream ballet? Is it shared between them? Or is it just one of them imagining what it would be like if things had gone differently?
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Posted 04 June 2018 - 10:26 AM

View PostSaraK, on 04 June 2018 - 09:51 AM, said:


Completely agree

Its easy to say 'we should have done things this way' but their whole core desires also didn't fit well. Mia wants the world of Hollywood - filming anywhere the wind takes her, new projects, an open ended future - where as Seb wants a very specific, localized dream - he wants a jazz club in a specific spot in LA. They want to support each other, and their desires compliment each other in a way, but not really in a sustainable way.

I think its an interesting take on the idea that you can deeply care for someone and still not be the right person for them. A lot of movies tend to tout 'Love can overcome anything!', which isn't true.

I do agree with y'all too except I'm totally in the camp of thinking he was like oh I could've been happy to follow her around and support whatever she wanted to do in life if I needed to with that final scene. But it's so interesting to me that we actually see the relationship not work out in the end because that really is what we see in Hollywood. Like there's a reason why when someone has been married to someone else for 8 years my mom will go "Holy crap that's long!" because in reality it really isn't that long of a marriage but in Hollywood that is. So we get this glimpse of a Spring to Fall romance that in our minds seems real and long and like they're meant to be, but it probably lasted all of 9 maybe 10 months max.

What I love about seeing movies like this in the theaters is that when it was revealed that she was married to some other dude the entire crowd I was with groaned and then laughed about we all groaned at the same time lol.
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Posted 04 June 2018 - 10:27 AM

View PostFister Roboto, on 04 June 2018 - 10:20 AM, said:

I'm curious what y'all think: whose fantasy is the dream ballet? Is it shared between them? Or is it just one of them imagining what it would be like if things had gone differently?

I think it's him telling her a story. The fantasy may be shared between them, but I think it's like him showing her what could have happened if he had made different choices. Because all of her choices were exactly the same in the scenario but this time he is the one who changed his life.
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#30 grudlian.

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 10:31 AM

View Posttaylor anne photo, on 04 June 2018 - 10:26 AM, said:

What I love about seeing movies like this in the theaters is that when it was revealed that she was married to some other dude the entire crowd I was with groaned and then laughed about we all groaned at the same time lol.

Her husband was Musical Mondays all-star Tom Everett Scott from That Thing You Do!

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 10:33 AM

View Postgrudlian., on 04 June 2018 - 10:31 AM, said:

Her husband was Musical Mondays all-star Tom Everett Scott from That Thing You Do!

WHAAAAAAAAT?

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#32 tomspanks

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 10:40 AM

View PostFister Roboto, on 04 June 2018 - 10:20 AM, said:

I'm curious what y'all think: whose fantasy is the dream ballet? Is it shared between them? Or is it just one of them imagining what it would be like if things had gone differently?


Gene Kelly's

#33 SaraK

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 10:42 AM

View Postgrudlian., on 04 June 2018 - 10:31 AM, said:

Her husband was Musical Mondays all-star Tom Everett Scott from That Thing You Do!


Guy Patterson was into jazz too! Maybe this is the son of Guy and Faye and Mia is just super into jazz musicians now.

#34 Cinco DeNio

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 11:01 AM

View PostSaraK, on 04 June 2018 - 05:40 AM, said:


This is my main problem with this movie. Seb, moments before meeting Mia and apparently falling hard, tells his sister he's not interested in a relationship - he's too focused on building his club. Mia does nothing to encourage his pursuit initially, she just mocks him for a momentary interaction where he's rude to her. Besides some chemistry, I don't understand why he suddenly is all in on her. On top of that, he drives me insane. He wants her to live his lifestyle of doing whatever you want, never compromising your ideals, live by your art but until he finds her for her audition, he does nothing to really help or learn about what she's doing. Unless I'm missing something completely, she's not like doing plays or performing anywhere - she's just doing auditions until he tells her to stop doing that and write her own thing. But he tells her this not knowing if she has any talents in writing! I was really happy that they did not end up together.

I have a very specific pet peeve that this movie dials into which is probably why I didn't enjoy it too much. People that say 'don't worry, it'll all work out' about their (or whomever they're talking to) dreams, and then trip into succeeding. I have friends like this - they just do whatever they want and it always works out the way they want it to. It drives me insane. Seb is like that. He's difficult and stubborn but talented and good looking, so he lands on his feet pretty easily and expects that's how the world actually works. I did appreciate his sister and John Legend both telling him he's kind of an asshole.

Ryan and Emma have some great chemistry that feels very lived in. I love watching the two of them just hanging out. And I love the visuals of this movie - all those colors! But as a whole, I wasn't super into this one.

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Mary Lane: (singing)"We are just like Romeo and Juliet. We're happy, young and <hacking cough> hemorrhaging blood."
-- Reefer Madness: The Movie Musical (2005)

Offscreen critic: "What was that s**t with the window?"
-- La La Land (2016)

#35 Cinco DeNio

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 12:31 PM

I vote for keeping Another Day of Sun but it also changed my expectations of what was to come. Someone in the Crowd also pumped up the energy but then the air went out of the balloon. I would have liked to seen more of Mia's struggles and then bring in Someone in the Crowd as her roommates' last-ditch effort to keep her going and off the bus to Boulder City.

It seems like Another Day of Sun was done in maybe one or two long takes. The only place I can see for an edit was after the band plays in the van. The camera does a quick whip-around and the skateboarder drops and starts going around the cars. If so that's quite impressive.
Mary Lane: (singing)"We are just like Romeo and Juliet. We're happy, young and <hacking cough> hemorrhaging blood."
-- Reefer Madness: The Movie Musical (2005)

Offscreen critic: "What was that s**t with the window?"
-- La La Land (2016)

#36 Cinco DeNio

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 12:37 PM

Speaking of Umbrellas of Cherbourg, it supposedly influenced one of the big dance numbers but I can't tell which one. Is that correct or am I misinterpreting?
Mary Lane: (singing)"We are just like Romeo and Juliet. We're happy, young and <hacking cough> hemorrhaging blood."
-- Reefer Madness: The Movie Musical (2005)

Offscreen critic: "What was that s**t with the window?"
-- La La Land (2016)

#37 taylor anne photo

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 12:54 PM

Question: Why does Mia go from being excited at his concert to like really concerned? Is it because she knows he isn't into this kind of music, is it because she's scared that he looks like he is into this kinda music now and he's letting go of his dreams, or is it because suddenly there's all these girls rushing the stage for her boyfriend?
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#38 CakeBug Tranch

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 12:56 PM

View Posttaylor anne photo, on 04 June 2018 - 08:52 AM, said:

I guess I felt like the movie was saying that because Seb was our "hero" and he kept talking about how John Legend was The Worst and how he didn't understand anything yadda yadda. But then when we actually meet John fully and hear his side of things I was suddenly like oh right no Seb is a fuckin idiot. Like opening an old timey Jazz club is a cool idea and loving the music is all fine and good, but I guess it's how Seb goes about all this that makes it seem like John is the villain of this story when really it's Seb himself because he's got his head stuck up his ass.

I took Seb's position on John Legend as seeing him as 'the worst' because he's playing the music he wants to play, and he's getting paid for it, which makes him a sellout. Clearly there's some baggage from when they were at music school/university together, and it comes down on the matter of the purity of music. It's interesting that Seb is the jazz traditionalist while JL is the innovator, so not only is he 'selling out' but he's selling out the tradition that Seb describes as part of JL's own heritage. It's interesting, though, in that in an indirect way, JL says that Seb is the worst too - essentially that his last keyboardist wasn't as talented as Seb, but Seb is a pain in the ass. Surely JL spends a little time at home with his fiancee/wife talking about how his new keyboardist is the worst too. Everyone's perception is based on their bias and worldview, and because they clash, they consider one another the worst.

Seb, however, IS the worst. At that photo shoot ("bite yer lip boy") on the ONLY night of his girlfriend's one-woman show, not only does Seb not say "do you think I can skip it? there's like, 34 members of this band and we're just miming", but he doesn't look at his watch or say "dude, I was here for the wide shots, can I please go now?" or "hey, I'm double-booked, can you snap a few of me and then I'll split?" Both times I've seen it I was wishing Seb would bust out of the photo shoot and at least catch SOME OF HER SHOW.

Man, the fantasy 'what if' ballet made me cry both times I've seen this movie because it's such a document of what their lives would have been like IF SEB STOPPED BEING SUCH A SHITHEAD. Everything else happens in exactly the same way - she still goes to Paris, becomes a star, they go to the club (I guess it's not called 'Seb's' now - I would like to propose it's called 'Shades's' and the drummer from the Oneders is up on the stage), and their lives are better, all if he didn't blow her off in the club, go on tour, etc etc etc. I never hated Seb until today. Damn you guys.
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#39 CakeBug Tranch

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 12:58 PM

View Posttaylor anne photo, on 04 June 2018 - 12:54 PM, said:

Question: Why does Mia go from being excited at his concert to like really concerned? Is it because she knows he isn't into this kind of music, is it because she's scared that he looks like he is into this kinda music now and he's letting go of his dreams, or is it because suddenly there's all these girls rushing the stage for her boyfriend?

I took it as her seeing him at the beginning playing his synth and knowing that although it's not his kind of music, at least he's playing for a crowd, then you add John Legend singing without the band, and it's still jazz-adjacent, but as soon as you add the dancing team and the bells and whistles, she sees that he hasn't just sold out a bit, but that this is so far overboard that she knows this is going to make him miserable. I also didn't think she liked the music much (regardless of what she says later)
Perkins: "What are you telling me this for? I was there, you idiot!" Exposition is hard, The Hurricane Heist

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#40 SaraK

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 01:03 PM

View PostCakeBug Tranch, on 04 June 2018 - 12:56 PM, said:

Seb, however, IS the worst. At that photo shoot ("bite yer lip boy") on the ONLY night of his girlfriend's one-woman show, not only does Seb not say "do you think I can skip it? there's like, 34 members of this band and we're just miming", but he doesn't look at his watch or say "dude, I was here for the wide shots, can I please go now?" or "hey, I'm double-booked, can you snap a few of me and then I'll split?" Both times I've seen it I was wishing Seb would bust out of the photo shoot and at least catch SOME OF HER SHOW.



Also, John Legend asks him if its a problem with no anger. Just an honest "you thought it was a different day? Too bad, do you think you can make it?" He gave him an out! He could have rescheduled his stuff! They put him in a hat and sunglasses, no one would know if he wasn't there.