Five Powerful Life Lessons From Oscar Nominated ‘La La Land’

Image courtesy of Lionsgate

‘La La Land’ is a dazzling love-soaked musical full of authentic characters on their journeys to follow their dreams. Besides being an extremely fun musical about love and life in LA, the film itself speaks to all sorts of entertainers who have faced rejection and pain, trying to make it in the world of glitz and glam.  It also speaks of changing circumstances in the lives of characters Mia (Emma Stone) and Sebastian (Ryan Gosling), as well as hard lessons they learn about love, fame, and being true to oneself.

After viewing this film twice, I gathered my thoughts on the life lessons presented in ‘La La Land’ that made the movie so profound, powerful, and relatable to audiences everywhere. Beware of *spoilers* throughout the list.

1. Following Your Dreams is Worth the Hassle

Throughout the film, both Mia and Sebastian work to follow their passions. Mia’s dream of being an actress propels her to audition and work several side jobs to keep up the rent; Sebastian has hopes of owning a classic jazz club, even while being unable to pay his bills. Both characters have massive obstacles in front of them, but they continue to put themselves out there regardless. All of the hard work does pay off in the end, because Mia and Seb work until they achieved their dreams.

2. People Will Reject You, But You Can’t Give Up.


As an actress, Mia faces constant rejection, even from casting directors who take just one look at her and decide she’s not perfect for a part without letting her audition. Though Mia does face a breaking point during the climax of the film, her resolve to keep trying (with some encouragement from Seb, of course,) is what ultimately leads to her big break as an actress. In other words, nothing worth having comes easy. Facing rejection failure in life can ultimately lead to success.

3. Those Who Truly Love You Will Support Your Career.


Though the demands of pursuing their careers did put a strain on their relationship at times, Mia and Sebastian were generally supportive of each other and their careers. They did not try to talk one another out of following their dreams and passions, and instead, they built each other up until both of them reached success. Love and support should be present in every relationship whether friendship or romantic.

4. Some People Are Only With You For a Part of Your Journey.

Source: giphy

As sad as it is, we don’t always get to spend our whole lives with people we fall in love with at a certain time or place. ‘La La Land’ teaches that this doesn’t lessen the love or the gratitude one had for all of the people are in our lives at any given point, even if it’s not forever. Someone can be there for a key part of the journey of your life, but maybe not for the forever end of your story. This teaches us to cherish the people by our side while they are there.

5. Every Person You Once Loved Has a Small Space In Your Heart.

source: giphy

Related to number four, the people you don’t end up with but once loved can and should hold a small corner of your heart. Though you may not be with them in the end, the love you had doesn’t always go away. You carry it in your memories and in the lessons you learned. That love can remain subtly in your heart forever.

In conclusion, I hope all readers have given ‘La La Land’ a try! It’s an incredible film, as obvious by the smattering of award nominations and actual award wins. I haven’t been to a movie theater that was instantly packed for one showing in a long time. I think it is a film that will go down in history. What makes it so special is the powerful lessons about love, heartbreak, and following your dreams that resounds perfectly with audiences everywhere.


Mary Claire is a 17 year old student and writer who loves politics, campfire smores, traveling, classic movies, and new music.

  1. Wonderful review. La La Land is on my movie list. After reading your lovely piece, I am more excited to see it. Thank you and I hope you always keep this blog so I can follow you as you achieve your dreams. ❤

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