Movie Review - "Rocketman" and "Bohemian Rhapsody"

Well I am not doing my usual music reviews this month, I am doing my first movie review.


Before I start, last month I reviewed Tones and I, an Aussie who was breaking a record for 8 weeks at number 1 on the ARIA charts. Well guys, she is STILL number 1 as I write this - 14 weeks total! This makes her the most globally streamed artist on Shazam, Spotify, iTunes - you name it, she has broken it. I highly recommend her EP, she has a unique sound but it's worth the listen.

Also, I just found out Tones and I was born 15/8/2000, so she's a Leo and Millennium child, only 19 years young!


Back to the review...


Both of these movies are brilliant and I highly recommend them. I didn't see them at the movies, I own both on DVD (I have a pretty good DVD collection).


First up...


Rocketman

My rating: 9/10


I mentioned this in our newsletter 2 years ago when I reviewed Elton John's Rocketman Collection (his greatest hits), but I will let you know something again: growing up, I didn't actually like Elton John's music very much but my brother was really into him.

That changed when I got older - Elton is brilliant! My all-time favourite songs of his are 'Rocketman', 'Bennie and the Jets', and 'Sorry'. Watching the movie, I knew every song and I was having a ball singing to them all.


The movie (released 30/5/19) is like a musical of Elton's life and every song that was sang told the story of a significant event in his life.

Elton was mainly raised by his mum and grandma; his father was horrible and showed Elton no love whatsoever (that really played out later with his addictions and finding his own sexuality).


Elton was flamboyant and was like that from an early age.


Elton John was played by Taron Egerton, who was brilliant - all glitter and glasses!

Elton's manager, John Reid, was played by Richard Madden.

Bernie Toupin was played by Jamie Bell.



The collaboration team of Bernie and Elton has lasted well over 50 years, Bernie writing the songs to Elton's music.

They all played great roles!


One thing from the movie that spun me out was how Elton would listen to someone play the piano, and be able to play what he had just heard perfectly - just by hearing it!

The movie shows Elton's struggle with substance use and he was either drunk or drugged up before he performed, I really don't know how he pulled it off so well for so long. His catchphrase was "I can snort you under the table". The movie shows a whole coffee table full of pills and bottles of alcohol. I will say that Elton had a wake up call and he checked himself into rehab, and has been sober for 30 years - no alcohol or drugs.


Some facts:

- Taron and Elton recently did a song together on Elton's Farewell Tour to standing ovations.

- When Eminem was spiralling with addiction (mainly drugs), Elton befriended and sponsored him and now Eminem has been sober for 20 years. I admire both of them, it takes guts to admit your flaws.

- The film was directed by Dexter Fletcher. It was originally planned in 2014, but the initial characters fell out due to 'creative differences'. It started up again in April 2018.


Next movie...


Bohemian Rhapsody

My rating: 9.5/10


Well, what can you say about Queen? Bloody brilliant! I bought 'A night at the opera' on Vinyl when I was 15 years old, I loved them. Queen's music and Freddie's voice is and was incredible. Their songs were great and it's a pity I didn't see them live, but the film made up for that.

What I learnt from the film, released in November 2018, is just how 'unreal' Freddie Mercury was. No record labels wanted to have an Opera/Rock song for 7-10 minutes on radio, but Freddie stood his ground and - yep - he and Brian May proved them wrong . It was a Number 1 song (and album) all around the globe. I remember watching 'Countdown' on a Sunday night with Molly, and the song Bohemian Rhapsody broke all the records. I didn't mind how often they played the song though, because I love it and I still do love it.


The film is basically the story of Queen's rise to super-stardom. Freddie was a very private guy and I learnt so much about him from watching this movie. He always had the audience in his command, no matter how big or small.


He had it tough as well regarding his sexuality, being openly bisexual but that changed later on. The film also explored Freddie's private battle with AIDS. I remember him only letting the public know 7 days before he died that something was wrong; but you learn in the film that he was actually battling for 13 years with it.


Some facts:

- The film was directed by Bryan Singer, and the original band members of Queen were executive producers.

- Freddie was Persian and changed his name to 'Freddie Mercury'.

- Freddie could play the piano upside down and write a song almost straight away.

- Sacha Baron Cohen was originally picked to play Freddie

- Freddie had an overbite but was too scared to have his teeth corrected (he didn't want to stuff his vocal chords up with the surgery).

- Elton once gave 2 male, naked skydivers to Freddie as a birthday present. They landed in the party that Elton had thrown for Freddie. When they landed, Elton said "they're yours, Freddie, do whatever you want with them - that's my gift to you."

- Adam Lambert, who is currently the vocalist for Queen, made a cameo in the film as a gay truck driver who flirts and hooks up with Freddie

- Rami Malik, the actor who played Freddie, won the 2019 Academy Award for Best Actor.

- Bryan May (lead guitarist) was played by Gwilyn Lee; John Decon (Bassist) was played by Joseph Mazzella; and Rodger Taylor (drummer) was played by Ben Hardy.


Do yourself a favour and check these two movies out - you won't regret it, they're both unreal!


** Please note - these photos are not our property, please refer to each individual picture for the source

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