OPENING NIGHT Everything you love about classic musicals gets a pitch-perfect update in the cinematic, colorful, and enormously enjoyable La La Land
. Mia (Emma Stone), an aspiring actress and playwright, slings coffee on the Warner Bros. lot between auditions. Sebastian (Ryan Gosling, infusing his character with just the right mix of romantic cynicism) is a jazz pianist, a purist lamenting the world’s indifference to his treasured art form. Though their first few meetings are rocky (they all but break into “Anything You Can Do” in their first number together), they have artistic passion in common, and the orbits of their lives intersect more and more as the SoCal “seasons” go by. Director Damien Chazelle’s follow up to Whiplash
(MVFF 2014) is exquisitely designed and shot, with wonderful music and a clever script. With La La Land
, Chazelle achieves what Sebastian strives for: preserving an artistic style by revising it just enough to make it fresh and new again.
Guests: Emma Stone, Damien Chazelle, Justin Hurwitz