Bohemian Rhapsody and all the images you see in this review are owned by 20th Century Fox
Directed by Bryan Singer and Dexter Fletcher
The day has finally come, hasn’t it? Over thirty years since his death, several failed attempts, and this one being mired in controversy because of who Fox decided to helm the damn thing, we FINALLY have ourselves a Queen and Freddie Mercury biopic. Like I said in my trailer talk, I’m probably in the majority of Queen fans in that I know the songs and see them as one of the biggest and most influential bands out there, but know very little about them outside of that. I know a little bit about Freddie and that they did the soundtracks for Flash Gordon and Highlander, but anything else (including who the other bandmates are) is a total mystery to me. Therefore, this is the kind of movie that’s PERFECT for me as well as millions of other people! Hook us with the great music and the solid performances, and then tell us all the details we should know about them and let us leave the theater a little bit smarter and with a renewed interest to buy any number of those CD collections or to splurge on iTunes! However, with a rather ho-hum trailer followed by similarly ho-hum reviews, is this truly the Queen biopic we’ve been waiting for, or was something missing (other than the director) to make this a true masterpiece? Let’s find out!!
If you don’t know already, Farrokh Bulsara, i.e. Freddie Mercury (Rami Malek) was your typical young adult in the seventies. Work a crappy job, write a few songs on the bus, and drink the night away listening to the local talent. One night however, he manages to convince one of the bands into letting him join and soon enough they form the band Queen; composed of Mercury, Brian May (Gwilym Lee), Roger Taylor (Ben Hardy), and John Deacon (Joseph Mazzello). From there, we watch Mercury’s relationship to Mary Austin (Lucy Boynton), fights with record executives (Mike Myers), and his burgeoning bisexuality as well as relationship with his handler Paul Prenter (Allen Leech). However, with individual egos, crushing discrimination against homosexuality, and the looming AIDS crisis, will Freddy manage to keep it all together or will he succumb to his worst tendencies to find some measure of fulfillment and happiness? Oh, and I’m sure the other guys have their own thing going on.
Bohemian Rhapsody is owned by 20th Century Fox and all the images you see in this trailer talk are the property of their respective owners
Directed by Bryan Singer and Dexter Fletcher
OH MAMA MIA! Has the day finally come for this biopic to see the light of day!? A Queen biopic has been floating around in Hollywood for a solid decade at the least, and I remember when they were ready to go on one starring Sacha Barron Cohen as Freddie Mercury which is certainly something I would have loved to see but sadly ended up falling through like all the other attempts. Now that we have the very first teaser trailer for this biopic, does it assuage the anxieties of eager fans as to whether Queen can be done justice on the big screen!? Let’s find out!!
Initial impressions are… okay I guess. You really shouldn’t expect TOO much to come out of a teaser trailer and we’ll surely get a few more before the film’s release in November, but I think they at least set the right tone to build up some hype before they start showing the meat of what this biopic will be about. The music playing over the whole teaser is a mashup of a bunch of queen lyrics over the beat to We Will Rock You which sounds a BIT awkward at points (ESPECIALLY with the chorus to Killer Queen), but it actually works surprisingly well when layered over Bohemian Rhapsody. We really don’t get any details on the plot other than the making of Bohemian Rhapsody will be a major subplot and that there’ll be a crap load of concert scenes throughout. The actors look fine I guess with Rami Malek (Mr Robot) as Front Man Freddie CLEARLY getting the spotlight. If I were to complain about one thing though, I’d say that he doesn’t quite look right as young Freddie with long hair even though he looks absolutely spot on for Mustache Freddie.
Murder on the Orient Express and all the images you see in this review are owned by 20th Century Fox
Directed by Kenneth Branagh
I’m hardly what you’d call “well read” as most of my cultural education comes from television and movies followed by people TALKING about television and movies, so while I’m aware that there’s a book out there called Murder on the Orient Express written by someone whose work I should really get around to reading, I don’t actually know what the story is about nor who the killer is which I GUESS would make me the target audience for a slick Hollywood retelling of the story starring some of the most beloved character actors out there… and Johnny Depp. I’m certainly excited to see this as I do love me a good mystery, and seeing a movie is ALMOST as good as reading a book… right? Anyway, does Kenneth Branagh manage to successfully bring the Agatha Christie classic to the silver screen once again, or does the brilliance of her work get lost in the midst of his vision for the material? Let’s find out!!
The movie begins with the famed detective Hercule Poirot (Kenneth Branagh) solving yet another world class mystery in the heart of Jerusalem and is now ready to take a much deserved vacation to recharge his mystery solving batteries! As luck would have it, he runs into an old friend named Bouc (Tom Bateman) who gets him a ticket on the one and only Orient Express which Bouc is the director of. Sadly for Poirot’s plans of leisure, not only does the train get stuck in an avalanche but one of the passengers (Johnny Depp) comes down with a bad case of MURDER! With only some minor cajoling from Bouc, Poirot begins to investigate The Case of the Stabbed Dude by looking into the pasts of all the other passengers (Penélope Cruz, Willem Dafoe, Judi Dench, Josh Gad, Derek Jacobi, Leslie Odom Jr, Michelle Pfeiffer, Daisy Ridley, Olivia Colman, Lucy Boynton, Marwan Kenzari, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Sergei Polunin, and Miranda Raison) to see if there’s anything to connect one of them to the guy sleeping in a pool of his own blood. Will Poirot uncover the criminal mastermind who was unfortunately enough to be sharing a train ride with the world’s greatest detective? Just who was the man who got viciously murdered, and what could have motivated someone to commit such an act? Wait… isn’t it a bit TOO convenient that the train JUST SO HAPPENED to get stuck after a murder is committed!?