Whiplash is one of the most underrated films in recent memory. Directed by Damian Chazelle (Whiplash, La La Land, First man) one of the brightest new directors in Hollywood. The man’s three films have earned 23 Oscar nominations and 10 wins. One of the most respectable resumes in Hollywood. He’s directed three amazing films and I cannot wait to see what he does next.
Whiplash is an incredible story about redemption, overcoming challenges, and pursuing what you believe in, not what others think is best for you. Miles teller takes the lead as Andrew Neiman, a promising jazz student at the fictional Shaffer Conservatory School of Music. Teller gives an incredible, breakout performance and proved that he should never be type-cast again.
As the film opens we see Andrew in a practice room. No one is around. Or so we think. As Andrew stops playing he starts speaking to someone. Terence Fletcher. Manipulative, Controlling, Abusive, and Vindictive, but charming when he wants to be. Fletcher thinks his harsh tactics help his students, it’s also clear that he enjoys the power he wields over them.
After Fletcher meets Andrew, he begins to manipulate him. Requesting Andrew to join his own personal band, to compete in the most prestigious competitions around the country. Not long after, it’s revealed what Fletcher’s true intentions are, to break Andrew and strip him of any self respect he still has. With motives unknown, rage unwarranted, and violence unregulated, Fletcher pulls no punches in the war on his students minds.
With one of the most provocative endings of recent memory that screams triumph, this film leaves you with nothing but sheer astonishment, and performances that will echo in the halls of acting for years to come. Whiplash is a truly incredible film. Crafted brilliantly, written exquisitely, it deserves every ounce of praise it gets.