LA LA LAND: Reinvented Musical Conveys Optimism and the Brutal Price of Career Goals on the Goodness of True Love

Updated 2 years ago by Tony Rutherford , HNN Entertainment Editor
LA LA LAND: Reinvented Musical Conveys Optimism and the Brutal Price of Career Goals on the Goodness of True Love

You're likely to hear enormous buzz when "La La Land" blitzes through the major Academy Awards concerning its similarity to show biz fables that glamorize the industry.

Excuse me.

Sure, the reintroduction of a song , dance and story romantic musical transcends to the "Singing in the Rain" and "Swing Time" styles or , perhaps, "Grease." However, the conflict faced choosing career dreams and love opportunities reflect beyond filmmaking and other on tour performers whether in concert or in live theater.

When the genre emerged few women selected on the road and location hopping careers other than those in artsy professions. The vagabond lifestyles of artists, actors, actresses, directors, vocalists, and performers reflected the turmoil of "long distance relationships," other than those where Uncle Sam called.

Dancing in and out and on top of vehicles stranded in an L.A. freeway jam sets the tone for the never, never land that userps the minds of baristas, retail workers, and blue collar types.

Two talents in waiting --- a jazz musician and a young actress --- possess a soul connection to each other encouraging not giving up in the face of no, no, no.

Mia [Emma Stone], an aspiring actress, and Sebastian [Ryan Gosling], a dedicated jazz musician, who are struggling to make ends meet in a city known for brutally crushing hopes and breaking hearts.

Pursuing auditions and networking parties interferes with just barely making a living. Having a steady job in your field may or may not be the dream where traditionalism skirts serious performance. And who understands "not getting paid, I'm paying to present my work on stage."

As success strikes one, the fragile thin line of 'love' becomes a commodity and potential baggage, especially with 'dreams' of the two not quite  matching.

Director Damien ("Whiplash," "10 Cloverfield Lane") Chazele evokes the optimistic nostalgic feel whether through bright colors, slow stylistic fade to black, and   mostly seamless transitions incorporating mostly bare dialogue yet enough to convey melancholic flow and pathos  that inevitably  captivates the audience amidst the lush break outs in song and tap dances.

Interestingly, the "touring" of the musician and film actress has become a standard as more and more professionals move from location to location for better career opportunities, leaving 'love' relationships in peril. Which is most important--- material career success or a one and only one plus one equals two-and-a-half couple that bring out the best and encourage through the worst.

So, enjoy the happiness of everyday life punctured by strong allusions to the "having in all" demands, which themselves must succumb to reevaluation , sacrifice and priorities. The "all" at journey commencement most likely differs from the anticipated goals due to challenges, detours , and unwanted wisdom that reveals the timing of major life altering decisions do not flow in perfect chronological order.

The stars sing, dance, smile, and brush tears. They could just as easily be you rather than so-called 'elite' accepting an award from their peers.

Remember the essence of best actress in a supporting role, Viola Davis (Fences), who poignantly told the Oscar audience that most of the best dreams , loves, and stories rest under a headstone in the ground. Perhaps her allusion is that "all" and "dreams" alter and mature along life's journey. Don't hold out too long for perfection or all of the dream remains a fantasy, the story untold, and love unrequited.


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