The Dorset-born filmmaker expands on that simple premise in Baby Driver, a high-octane crime caper which gleefully burns rubber to a toe-tapping soundtrack. Baby, played by Ansel Elgort with Steve McQueen cool, dark glasses, and seemingly permanent earbuds, is a young man who works exclusively for crime boss Doc (a blissfully over the top and very amusing Kevin Spacey) as a getaway driver for Doc's various heists.
It's the simplest of stories: a fast getaway wunderkind (Ansel Elgort) gears up to put some serious distance between himself and the in-it-for-life lags (Kevin Spacey, Jamie Foxx, Eiza González, Jon Hamm), he works with, falling for a waitress (Lily James) along the way. The gimmick here is so good that I actually wanted more of it: "more killer tracks, more death-defying car-eography, more chase scenes shot to look like renegade Uber commercials". While there are only so many ways to shoot a vehicle chase, Wright ("Shaun of the Dead") has somehow managed to breathe new life into it through the combination of sight and sound, as the music perfectly punctuates every lightning-fast edit.
However, Wright's loyal following may have a problem with what happens between the vehicle chases, as the story in Baby Driver can dip into formulaic territory. The film expands from 2,606 to 3,150 locations on Wednesday night.
Each daredevil heist pays off a fraction of the dues that Baby owes Doc. Through that relationship, we learn a little more about Baby: his parents died in an auto accident (he was in the vehicle, too), which still haunts Baby, and he listens to music constantly to help his permanent tinnitus.
Now that this Easter egg is officially out there, it will be up to fans heading into theaters to see Baby Driver to keep a sharp eye out and identify exactly where, when, and how Streep show up in the film.
There are times when Baby Driver doesn't even feel like an Edgar Wright movie.
Elgort plays the character of Baby similar to Ryan Gosling in "Drive" (which director Nicolas Winding Refn took from Ryan O'Neal in Walter Hill's 1978 classic, "The Driver") - quiet and methodical - which is good because there are some instances when Elgort has to do some heavy acting and comes off a little green. The sentimental ending isn't a deal-breaker, but Wright has better movies inside him. Baby reluctantly agrees to join Doc's team for one more job before he can get away. Elgort ("The Fault in Our Stars") is a strong silent center of the hurricane of action around him, and his chemistry with the lovely James ("Cinderella") energizes the movie. "I'd ask them them, 'Did you ever listen to music on the way to a job?' One of them said, 'I wouldn't listen to anything on the way to the job because I've got enough demons making music in my head.' I was like, 'Oh boy, write that one down, '" Wright recalls.
Heist movies have been a staple in Hollywood since 1955's Rififi. The diversity in styles of music provides an ear opening range that'll have you quietly shazam-ing through out the movie.