Rocketman (dir. Dexter Fletcher, 2019) – Revered musical legend Elton John re-lives his breakout years in a fantastical musical.
Topped with inviting shades of fantasy, Rocketman leads us on an outrageously gratifying wild ride from start to finish.
Estranged families, addictions, and struggles with sexuality. Present are all the usual suspects of rock star adventures in Rocketman. But based on a true fantasy, this is clearly no biopic from the mould. Director Dexter Fletcher chooses his own perfect way to retell Elton John’s highs and lows.
Showered in flamboyance and operatic excess, the film proves befitting for the Pinball Wizard known and beloved for his larger-than-life personality. Big musical numbers never feel too out of town, bringing tinges of hope to the darkest moments.
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Bohemian Rhapsody (dir.
Bryan Singer Dexter Fletcher, 2018) – In 1970, Freddie Mercury, Brian May, Roger Taylor, and John Deacon take the stage by storm with the formation of Queen.
Bohemian Rhapsody pays tribute not just to Freddie Mercury but Queen and their music, keeping the spirit of the legendary band alive.
Bohemian Rhapsody could have gone the obvious direction, massively drawing upon the darker recesses of Freddie Mercury’s arduous life. But he deserves better. Defined by much more than his personal tragedies, the Queen frontman was ultimately the legend who changed the lives of many with his immortal music and inspiring tenacity.
Writer Anthony McCarten and director Dexter Fletcher (shall we all refuse to acknowledge Singer) fortunately recognised this. While never avoiding Mercury’s struggle with the pressure of his celebrity and sexuality, they neither dwelt on nor exploited it. Instead, the limelight rightfully falls on his many triumphs, be it in his defiance against Queen’s detractors or his inspired penning of the titular magnum opus.
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