Robert’s Reviews: ‘La La Land’

Hello Clever People! Welcome to my review for the record-tying 14-Oscar nominated musical "La La Land". This film revolves around the story of Mia, an aspiring actress and Sebastian, a jazz enthusiast, and how their relationship affects their work and them as people.

Robert Burke
Robert Burke is a 15-year-old film critic currently attending Shasta High School. His love for film started when he was very young, and grows as he learns more and more about it. Robert expresses his love for film through reviews, which can be found on this website every Saturday. Film is not his only passion, as he also loves to act in local productions with Cascade Theater, Shasta College and Riverfront Playhouse. He currently lives in Redding, CA, and hopes to one day be a film director. To view all of Robert’s reviews go to
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17 Responses

  1. Beverly Stafford says:

    Oh Robert, I so enjoyed your presentation.  Even though I didn’t need captions because I could understand all your words, those of us who are somewhat hearing impaired truly need captions for everything on television.  Your captions were A-1 unlike what passes for captions on our local news channels.  I digress, but I wonder if any of the powers that be on the local news channels even look at their dreadful captions.  So often one segment shows captions for an upcoming segment that hasn’t yet appeared.  They could definitely take lessons from you, Robert.

    I look forward to future reviews.  You are obviously following your dream and will go far.

  2. Kathleen says:

    Great job Robert! I’ve seen the movie and also loved it.  I agreed with everything you said and after hearing your review, I want to see it again. You have a real talent and I’m looking forward to your next installment.   Well done!

  3. I ADORED this movie. I listened to an interview with Damien Chazelle on NPR and was blown away by his enthusiasm and his vision for the film, so I couldn’t wait to see it — and I’m ready to see it again. I’m thrilled that Hollywood is making musicals once more  — this is the kind of entertainment I raised my kids on.

    My son is a professional dancer, heading to L.A. this Spring.  I feel so hopeful for him — and everyone who follows their dreams — thanks to writers and directors like Damien Chazelle.

  4. Kim says:

    Great review! I am going to see it!

  5. Barbara Cosindas says:

    Robert pretty much summed up how I felt about the movie!

    I have seen it twice already and am wanting to go again. The music is so addicting and makes you want to throw you cares away and dream!!

    Being a former So Cal resident I loved seeing so many landmarks I recognized.

    The choreography was fantastic and it makes you want to start humming and skipping whenever one of those songs start playing in your head.  Why not!!

    Lastly, this movie shows that if you have a dream to go for it, even if it means sacrifice and hard work.

  6. A. Jacoby says:

    Oh, come on now . . . . how did you hide that very perceptive 40-year-old in that 14 year-old body. What 14 yer old do you know the uses word like “immersive’? I’d watch this young man’s film review even if I DIDN’T like to o to movies. Gave me some real insight on what to look for when I do go see LaLa Land. In fact, I don’t think I want to see another movie withOUT a review by Robert. I’m afraid I’d miss so much.

    VERY perceptive, VERY articulate. Everything a good review should be.

    No, . . . wait . . . fourteen? Are you SURE??

    • Beverly Stafford says:

      What nice – perfect, actually – comments.  Robert will be bustin’ his buttons over your review of his review.

  7. pamela says:

    This young man will go far.   So nice to listen to how well he articulates his thoughts, and his passion.

    And it’s wonderful to see someone his age be so enthusiastic and have such dreams, and promise!

    Good addition to A News Cafe

  8. Karen C says:

    I love this young man….what a passion at his young age.  Watch out world, Robert is coming!

  9. Diane G says:

    I too loved LaLa Land,but I think I saw it quite differently from everyone else. I saw it as a beautiful, bittersweet tragedy. She gave up the love of her life for success. Her life was OK in the end, but when she reminisced and imagined her life with her Love, she was beyond OK: she was happy. He was OK too, and he achieved his dream, but he was alone with his club and his music. It was clear that he still loved her. I was sad at the end.

  10. Carolyn Fetsko says:

    I loved hearing your well done review partly because you are so well spoken and perceptive but especially because you have a young fresh perspective. I couldn’t disagree more with your review however. I think I have seen every musical ever made and I am still singing all the songs. I can’t even remember one song from La La Land. The Jazz was the best part. The theme of striving towards one’s dreams and accepting disappointment and lousy jobs along the way was admirable but I think it dragged on way too long. Some editing would have improved the movie. Both stars are multi talented but I think wasted in this vehicle. Binge watching Glee would have been more entertaining. But let me say Robert, your talent is NOT wasted. You do a great job and I love how astute you observations are. I look forward to more reviews.

  11. Beverly Stafford says:

    Robert, were you surprised (amazed, shocked) that Mad Max won the Oscar for Best Picture last year – or that it was even in the running?  I could see that it could win an award for special effects and stunts, but Best Picture?  Surely not.  I have believed for a long time that the Academy Awards are nothing more than a popularity contest rather than being based on merit.

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