Bohemian Rhapsody (PG-13)

Drama 135 min. November 2, 2018
By Lina Lecaro
Bohemian Rhapsody, about Queen and its lead singer Freddie Mercury, has everything fans might expect from a rock & roll biopic, and even though it doesn't break new ground on the genre, it does what it sets out to do very well. The vibrant, at times surreal, flashback-filled film starring Rami Malek portrays Mercury as he was: one of the most daring and unapologetic figures in pop culture, a queer man fronting a straight band with a moniker that winked at this truth, with an utterly wondrous voice and a stage presence that mesmerized people to the point of possession. He rocked hard and apparently he lived hard, too.

For that to ring true on film, some expect a rawer depiction of his debauchery, coke binges, gay sex, etc. This film shows all that, if in an overview kind of way, but more important to hard-core Queen fans, it captures the music and the energy; the fun, friendship and fearlessness that fueled this phenomenal band. It may not avoid cliché, but the best movies about music usually don't. By design, a film that seeks to celebrate true rock-star mojo tends to follow a familiar path: youthful exuberance and the desire to express it creatively, an arc with some sort of challenge, tragedy or downward spiral, and finally, redemption, which in this film’s case happens onstage just as it should.
Bryan Singer Rami Malek, Allen Leech, Ben Hardy, Gwilym Lee, Joe Mazzello, Aaron McCusker Anthony McCarten 20th Century Fox

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