I agree that Tarantino envy is probably better than the alternative, the vast majority of movies today target the absolute lowest possible common denominator and set the bar so low that it is good to see any movie aim higher.
As for action movies, the vast majority of movies released these days are action movies, so I am starting to hold them to a higher and not a lower standard. I honestly will not go to them unless they suggest that they might be trying to be something slightly greater than a CGI apocalypse combined with “good looking” heroes and “evil-doers.”
Personally, I felt (by far) the best performance was by Jamie Foxx (who was odd and surprising in every scene he was in).
As for the music, GOTG 1 was a fun movie but the soundtrack was so safe and meticulously designed to inspire nostalgia while taking zero risks. It was the musical equivalent of giving everyone at the theater something that tasted like Grandma’s chocolate cake. At least Baby Driver added some music that most people didn’t likely know and might even be jarred by. Maybe GOTG 1 Soundtrack made you “wiggle with Joy” but it felt a bit too gently curated for my liking (like a bunch of executives begging a computer algorithm to make the public dance).
As someone who has spent much of his life digging for hidden musical gems, I appreciated the use of underground music as a plot device (and almost as a character) in Baby Driver as much as anything else in the entire production.
We disagree a bit on the exposition, although I hate obvious exposition, Tarantino does a great job of building-in motivations and codes into his characters that explain the twists and turns throughout his movies.
Anyway, Baby Driver was a ton of fun either way.