A thing about La La Land9th January 2017
Tell you what, if you feel like watching something with music in it, don’t bother with La La Land. I know it’s just won five billion Golden Globes and everyone’s comparing it to Singin’ In The Rain but I thought it was a load of old toss.
Normally I love its stars (Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone), AND I loved Whiplash, the 2013 hit which was written and directed by the same dude who wrote and directed this (a 31-year-old Oscar-winning
foetus prodigy called Damien Chazelle).
But La La Land is dull. A musical love story set in LA. Except it’s a slow love story with absolutely no major surprises. ‘Subtly brilliant,’ some of the critics have said. Pretty bloody subtle if you ask me (where are you, brilliance? Come out, come out, wherever you are!) because I couldn’t spot it at all. Boring Land, more like.
If you feel like watching something actually brilliant with music in it, can I suggest Supersonic, last year’s Oasis documentary.
I’ve been haunted by Oasis ever since I was 10. It was early 1996, a few months after the release of their second album (What’s The Story) Morning Glory?. That was the year Oasis played to 250,000 people across two nights at Knebworth, the biggest gigs in British history. Oasis were mega. But not to me. I was a tubby 1o-year-old who wore velvet headbands and, it’s fair to say, not hugely popular at school. The other girls were already into boys; I was more into my pony. I was especially confused when I overheard someone saying that a morning glory was to do with erections because I wasn’t sure what an erection was. That thing that politicians did every few years?
Anyway, one day, there was a quiz that went round. A quiz about pop culture. But I can only remember one question, which was ‘Who’s your favourite Britpop band – Blur or Oasis?’ I wasn’t 100 per cent sure what Britpop was either but I knew it was important to get the answer right. I was a social leper who ate my packed lunches in a cubicle of the girls’ loos. If I got this wrong, I feared the other 10-year-olds would think even less of me. So I plumped for Blur on the basis that I knew the lead singer was called Damon and I didn’t know who the lead singer in Oasis was. Turns out it was the wrong answer because most people in my class went for Oasis. I think there was jeering.
Over 20 years on, having just watched Supersonic, I am now clearer about the lead singer thing (it’s pretty bloody confusing though – both Liam and Noel have eyebrows like fat slugs AND they both sing). I mean, what total tossers they were and yet, also, what a dizzy and mad time they had on the way up. It’s a gripping look at their rise – drugs, dogfights and all – and the stresses and strains that went with being one of the biggest bands in the world. So I feel like I probably should have picked Oasis back in 1996. Ah well. Now I just need to figure out what an erection is.