For the first time in a long while, I actually got goosebumps. No, not that mediocre Jack Black flick of the same name from a couple of years back, rather the feeling when something goes through your body and one feels in tune.
I’ve said in the past that I am not fond of too many musicals, but I was actually looking forward to seeing what director Bryan Singer would do with the Queen biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody.”
As with my dislike of horror flicks and love for anything related to John Carpenter, this one gets a pass in my book. I’m a devotee of Queen and their amazing music.
For starters, lead Rami Malek emulates the late Freddie Mercury perfectly. If you think you’ve seen Malek before, you’re probably right. He was on the Golden Globe-winning “Mr. Robot” on USA Network the past couple of seasons. Supporter Christian Slater won an Emmy for his role as friend and confidant, the “Mr. Robot” title character.
I trust the director here. Singer has not made too many bad movies. Early on in his career, he helmed one of the greatest pretzel-twisting mystery suspense films, “The Usual Suspects.” That was early in Singer’s career, 1995 to be exact. With “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Singer delves head on into the band’s creation with Malek’s screen persona legally changing his name to Freddie Mercury to get noticed more by the press and mass media. One also has to realize this was in the pre-cell phone days and when being featured on TV music shows was a very big deal. The one thing I really noticed was that the film did not reference Queen’s contributions to movie soundtracks. The first was “Flash Gordon” in 1980 directed by British auteur Mike Hodges. The band also contributed to Sidney J. Furie’s “Iron Eagle” in 1985. The group would gain more notoriety the following year for creating the soundtrack to director Russell Mulcahy’s action-fantasy-hybrid “Highlander.”
In “Bohemian Rhapsody,” there is a brief scene that uses a track from “Highlander,” the one that includes the song “Who wants to Live Forever?” from the movie.
Irony is thrown into the movie big time with the appearance of Mike Myers. In the early 1990s, Myers starred in the film “Wayne’s World.” His character of Wayne hosted the public access TV show of the same name,“Wayne’s World.”
Wayne and his best friend, Garth (Dana Carvey), rock out to the song “Bohemian Rhapsody.”
In the film “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Myers plays record producer Ray Foster who scoffs at the idea of even recording the song as a stand-alone track. He would later regret it, because even though the song runs over six minutes, it is still popular to this day.
“Bohemian Rhapsody” delivers in every single department. Even the backstory doesn’t take too much away.