“La La Land”: Old-Fashioned Romance

Kris Tapley has whetted my appetite to see this picture: ‘La La Land” — which stars Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling in a romantic pairing that almost feels chemically balanced to perfection — is about reaching. (Todd McCarthy says the movie is perfect “for lovers of classic musicals.”) It’s a reminder to the stability-clinging pragmatist in us all that the painful, often self-destructive act of dreaming is the very elixir of life. It’s really quite beautiful, and as another Oscar season begins, this time under a dark cloud of controversy, movies like this take their natural place: Escapist wonderment that reminds audiences why they bother staring at flickering images on a wall in the first place.’

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