FILM OF THE WEEK: Bohemian Rhapsody
Any film trying to depict one of the greatest showmen of all-time and the complexities of his character, is always going to come under scrutiny from die-hard fans and critics alike.
From the moment Rami Malek (Mr Robot) was cast as legendary Queen star, Freddie Mercury, Bohemian Rhapsody split the fanbase. The film itself, a pseudo biopic that charts the rise of one of Britain’s most lauded bands, is similarly divisive.
On the one hand, Malek delivers an absolutely sterling turn as Mercury. From the way he’s captured his stage presence, to that very precise, almost lispy way that he talks.
The casting of band members Brian May (Gwilym Lee, Fresh Meat), Roger Taylor (Ben Hardy, Eastenders) and John Deacon (Joseph Mazzello, The Social Network) is also spot-on. While Bohemian Rhapsody the story does do a great job of charting their rise from struggling act to the show-stealing Live Aid performance and beyond, there’s barely any depth to the plot.
What plays out is enjoyable, but it skirts a lot of the band’s nuances and reduces them to empty vessels that are only there to push the film on to the next banging tune. Sure, it’s ideal for those that just want a big screen version Queen’s Greatest Hits, but we can’t help but feel the film is a missed opportunity to get under the skin of the legendary frontman.
Biopics of musicians are notoriously difficult to get just right, and unfortunately, with this, another one bites the dust.
In cinemas November 8
Best Music biopics
Walk the Line
Joaquin Phoenix is on top form as American singer-songwriter, Johnny Cash and charts his life and loves in his tumultuous early days.
Such is the brilliance of Jamie Foxx’s portrayal of the brilliant Ray Charles, he scooped the Academy Award for Best Actor for his incredible performance.
Straight Outta Compton
One of the more recent successes lasers-in on rap royalty, NWA and their rise from the streets of Compton, L.A. to becoming the voice of a generation.
Mancunian band, Joy Division are at the centre of this deeply dark, but intriguing tale about the rise to fame and lead singer Ian Curtis dealing with personal problems.
Sure, it’s not strictly a biopic of Eminem’s life, but the story is inspired by real events from his life including his tough upbringing and his start in rap battles.
What else is in the cinemas over the next week
The Nutcracker and the Four Realms
Just in time for the festive period, comes this big budget fairytale starring Keira Knightley, Morgan Freeman and Ellie Bamber.
The Girl in the Spider’s Web
A journalist and computer hacker find their lives entwined as they become involved in a shady world of dangerous spies, criminals and corrupt governments.
J.J. Abrams directs this twisted WWII epic that sees a group of American paratroopers infiltrate a mysterious Nazi test lab that contains a terrifying new enemy.
It should’ve been out in the summer, but Nic Cage’s psychological thriller set in a seedy hotel is finally here in all it’s shady glory.