review

Baby Driver: Carefree Enjoyment, Demanded at Gunpoint

Baby Driver: Carefree Enjoyment, Demanded at Gunpoint

There’s this dog my housemate owns. His name is Charlie, and he’s really a lovely pet. He’s sweet, fluffy, nothing but good intentions. He also has the capacity to be the most annoying Golden Retriever this side of California.

Every time I go to do laundry, there he is. He bounces up to me with a soggy, half-torn chew toy in his mouth, panting expectantly, eyes wide. Clearly, there’s nothing more he’d like than for me to take it, and nothing more I’d like than to take it, except for the small matter of him not letting go of the damn toy, no matter how long I stand there as he whines. It makes every laundry trip an exhibition of existential depression as I have to confront Charlie, who is trying so hard to do one thing and failing, making everyone around him either exasperated or uncomfortable.

Seeing Baby Driver is a lot like visiting Charlie.

Fast and Furious, No Longer the Right Kind of Mess

Fast and Furious, No Longer the Right Kind of Mess

Charlize Theron and Helen Mirren star in Fast and Furious 8—two actresses, who, between them, hold 4 Oscar nominations and 2 wins. It is a degree of prestige the Fast films have not seen before, so why does it feel like the beginnings of a last wheeze? In this latest entry in the protracted franchise, Theron plays Cipher, a villainous hacker figure who forces Dominic Toretto (the chronically stoic Vin Diesel) into her service against his own merry band of street-racers-turned-criminals-turned-international-mercenaries. Mirren plays the mother of Deckard Shaw—or, as he will more likely be remembered, Jason Statham—the man who killed Han, one of Diesel’s accomplices, in Furious 7, Furious 6, and, retroactively, The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift. The series sounds like a mess because it is one; until now, though, it has felt rare and lively, something that cannot be said the eighth time around...