If you're not a big musicals fan, then the first half hour of this is a bit of a chore. And not that impressive actually (would have liked to see more faces, mouths and expressions, less identikit jazz hands) , especially considering that despite their best efforts, this isn't really Gosling and Stone's forte. However! Once Chazelle pulls back in this regard, the drama of their relationship kicks in and they get to do some acting rather than spinning around mouthing off. When this happens, the film soars, and I fell in love with it.