There has been a recent trend in hollywood to recapture the “American Movie Musical”. This has been a trend a long time in the making but, is finally beginning to gain ground with the box office success of films such as Les Miserable and Into the Woods. La La land technically also falls into the same area, setting records at the Golden Globes for wins. But as all to often happens with major box office films dozens of smaller often more truthful films must suffer for its success. One of these films would be film Once. The film, released in 2007, saw much less recognition then its broadway cousin but in many ways gives us a more realistic and gritty look into the lives of musicians. As a street performer myself it is always heartening to see realistic portrays of their lives which unlike the Broadway musicals is not always quite as clear. Sing Street (2016) was actually nominated against La La Land. Rather than unintentionally ironic casting of superstars as struggling artists we have raw true performances from a group of relatively unknown film makers. The music focuses around 80s pop and gives the audience a genuine story of music as a tool for hope. Like La La land it is filled with symbolic film making but rather than throwing it in your face with editing by directly copying traditional conventions it takes those conventions and subtly uses them to improve the story. This is an improvement on La La land who seems to employ these tactics simply for nostalgia’s sake without really serving to enhance the story telling. Small budget films such as this all too often fall through the cracks never to be seen again.
It’s La La land but much better, and Irish.