Bohemian Rhapsody is a foot-stomping celebration of Queen, their music and their extraordinary lead singer Freddie Mercury. Freddie defied stereotypes and shattered convention to become one of the most beloved entertainers on the planet. The film traces the meteoric rise of the band through their iconic songs and revolutionary sound. They reach unparalleled success, but in an unexpected turn Freddie, surrounded by darker influences, shuns Queen in pursuit of his solo career. Having suffered greatly without the collaboration of Queen, Freddie manages to reunite with his bandmates just in time for Live Aid. While bravely facing a recent AIDS diagnosis, Freddie leads the band in one of the greatest performances in the history of rock music. Queen cements a legacy that continues to inspire outsiders, dreamers and music lovers to this day.
What We Thought:
The first 2 acts of Bohemian Rhapsody are your pretty standard musical biopic. It explains how the band was formed, their rise to fame, the excess of success, the in-fighting and all that you expect to see in a biopic. It’s like an extended version of the old VH1 show Behind the Music, but with actors.
But then there’s the third act especially the final 20 minutes or so. Then my friends, then you’ll be in awe. Rami Malek (of Mr. Robot fame) announces to the world that he is a superstar and gets himself awards notice. The final 20 minutes is sheer brilliance with Rami Malek just outright being the legendary Freddie Mercury. Queen’s performance at Live Aid in 1985 to me is one of, if not the best musical performance of all time. It’s an iconic performance and Malek nails every step, every fist pump, every crowd screaming movement that Freddie Mercury himself did. The last 20 minutes of this film, the re-enactment of the Live Aid performance, is worth the price of admission alone.
I was a fan of the band Queen. They have some legendary songs that are still played today across stadiums and radios and everything in between. The movie is for fans of the band and of Freddie Mercury, but you don’t need to know much about any of them going into it. There is enough backstory on Freddie and how the band met, the recording of hit songs, all that stuff. Even if you know the story, it’s still a lot of fun because the actors cast in the roles look perfect and the music puts you in a good mood. They all give great performances and Malek at a minimum will get a Best Actor Comedy/Musical Golden Globe nomination.
It’s also extremely well made. A lot of people have issues with Director Bryan Singer, but all that aside, the man can direct. Yes there is controversy with how much he actually directed because he did leave the production while filming. But whoever was behind the camera did a great job because there are fantastic scenes and shots that give the film life. If you look at the poster above, you see a reflection in Freddie’s glasses and there are a few similar shots in the movie. The film has great movement, great flow, visuals and style. Even though it’s over 2 hours long, it never feels slow or boring.
Speaking of controversy, people who haven’t seen the film think the trailers hide Mercury’s sexuality. If they watched the movie before they ran their mouths, they would know the film doesn’t hide anything. Mercury himself was rather private about his life and was with women and men. He died of AIDS so people just think of him as being gay. In the film it does show his relationship with Mary Austin who he called the love of his life and who he bought a house for. It also shows him with men and being in a relationship with Jim Hutton till his death so I have no idea what these people are complaining about.
As a fan I completely enjoyed Bohemian Rhapsody. It makes you want to sing along and clap in your seat. Yes the filmmakers took some liberties with the timeline (Live Aid and Freddie’s AIDS diagnosis are years apart in real life), but that aside, it will be in my top 10 of 2018 for sure. Malek turns in a superstar in the making performance and there’s a fantastic Mike Myers/Wayne’s World Easter Egg. I had a lot of fun with it. A friend who is also a Queen fan had a lot of fun with it too. I’m considering seeing it again soon. Now bring on Taron Egerton’s Elton John flick!
Cast & Crew:
- Rami Malek
- Lucy Boynton
- Gwilym Lee
- Ben Hardy
- Joseph Mazzello
- Aidan Gillen
- Tom Hollander
- Mike Myers
Recommended If You Like:
- Musical Biopics