Bohemian Rhapsody

Posted on 12/10/2018 in misc

One word review: Meh

Short review: Better song than a movie

It's not a bad movie. I think most people that spend $12 a ticket on it will leave the theater satisfied. Rami Malek should get an Oscar nod for his portayal of Freddie Mercury. But ultimately the movie left a lot on the table. Everything feels very shallow. Here are just a few things that get glossed over in the movie.

  • The journey from first gig to initial success. Was Queen an overnight sensation that was selling out local pubs overnight, or was it a slog for a while? The movie jumps from first gig to reasonable success a year later.

  • The songwriting process. We get almost no insight into some of their biggest hits. Even the title song is sort of glossed over. Freddie got obsessed with producing an operatic song. Why? Where did that come from?

  • Freddie's life as a gay man in the 70s. The movie sort of sets up a contast between the stable traditional relationships the rest of the band enjoyed to Freddie's lonely search for love through gay relationships, while implying he should have just married Mary and been done with it. That's an odd take on the life of Fredie Mercury. They also imply Paul was the bad guy dragging Freddie into a hedonistic lifestyle. True? I don't know.

  • Freddie's solo career? Him going solo is a major breaking point in the movie but it's mostly used to exhibit Paul's increasing contol over his life.

Ultimately, it feels like a 2-hour episode of Behind the Music from MTV, and not a serious biopic of a major cultural influence of the late 20th Century.

This is entry #10 in my attempt at 31 days of blogging for December 2018. I've haven't posted here daily since about 2007, so this should be interesting.

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