London Kills Me – The New Spain

Edgar Wright you can turn any material into a lustrous catalog of stunning images thanks to exercises in a bombastic style. His films may have more or less solvent scripts and their irregularity is indisputable, but in all of them there are a handful of moments that make your eyes stand on edge. Do we agree that Welcome to the end of the world is his best work together with The Sparks Brothers?

After the spirited and thunderous Baby driver, Wright marks a trip to the past in every way. Not only because of the plot resource of catching a character in time, this time without a loop or a fantastic car, but also and above all because of the barrage of references of all kinds and conditions that it throws into the stew, giving it from the first hour (+ or -) a wiggle of the squid that dislodges, tides and ends up irritating. His great merit is also his Achilles heel for not knowing how to measure quantities. And it saturates because the duration gets out of hand (almost two hours, when the ideas ran out much earlier), it repeats itself and, boom, it falls apart.

But let’s not get carried away so soon by disappointment, which is toxic. Let’s enjoy that first formidable part in which we follow in the footsteps of a girl who leaves her town to go to London to try to be a fashion designer. The collision with a world completely different from the one he knows is brutal. And how well the director tells that permanent state of perplexity, fear and anger. It drops clues that we are not dealing with a typical life learning story: the aspiring designer has many open wounds in her memory, and her shy and scary nature only stops causing problems when she uses her passion for yesterday: fascinating London 60s with James Bond on the bill, music by Petula Clark and Sandie Shaw, dreamy costumes. Wright does not stitch without thread. That the protagonist is called “Eloise” is not accidental (how we miss Tino Casal). Nor is the cast of former stars like Terence Stamp, the angry Rita Tushingham and the late Diana Rigg (Emma Peel in “The Avengers”). The permanent and invasive soundtrack (as in Baby driver) makes the film an undercover musical, and nothing to object to. And we consider valid and valuable that first confusion of unfoldments resolved with sophisticated brilliance. Wright makes mirrors an extraordinary tool. But the irruption of the ghostly element turns the excess into a lack of solutions, the characters lose interest, the rhythm becomes lethargic due to many pranks made by the camera. History becomes hysteria trying to emulate Argento, De Palma or Polanski, and it is boring in the attempt.

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