Film Reviews by Ben Silverman '20
Release date: November, 2, 2018
Bohemian Rhapsody will be remembered as one of the best films of the year, and yet the target audience seems to hate it. Releasing on the 2nd, it hit the box offices big and has already broken 50 million from just ticket sales. I saw it twice, once at a press only screening (about a week before the public opening) and once on opening day with my family. I loved it both times, the lead actor (Rami Malek, playing Freddie Mercury) does an excellent job in capturing the spirit of Freddie Mercury and the music, the obvious highlight of the film, was extremely impactful. This film wasn’t made for the modern movie-going crowd. To a high schooler who doesn't really know who Freddie Mercury was - his story, his personal life, his relationships with the rest of Queen - this movie should have been terrible. This movie is made for the people who were at Live Aid, who saw it on TV, who knew who Queen was, who heard Bohemian Rhapsody being played on the radio. And yet, they completely missed that audience. The movie is being hit for being inaccurate, over dramatising things, and intentionally misrepresenting who Mercury was. However, it didn’t need to do that to be a great movie. It taught me who Freddie Mercury was, gave me the backstory of Queen and their unorthodox methods. Even though it didn’t do what they intended, it was still a great movie.
The filmmaking aspect of Bohemian Rhapsody was not the best, I will admit that. There weren’t any amazing shots with odd angles that add to the scene, no single shot sequences that changed the mood, and I didn’t see any jump cuts or edits that made a scene special. That is where the director failed. If a little more time had been put into editing and framing, this movie would have been perfect. Instead, he let the plot play out regularly - clear and unobstructed by anything special. However, that doesn’t work in movies anymore. To really knock it out of the park, filmmakers are putting more time into post production, editing, sound editing - everything that they can do to make a regular scene into something more. I can name 10 scenes from American Psycho that were made special because of the framing or editing. I can’t list a single scene in Bohemian Rhapsody that has that effect. Bryan Singer, the director, will be known for promising us a movie about a unique man that did a thousand unique things - and yet he didn’t make a unique movie.
Overall, I like this film. It entertained me enough to see it twice, with some convincing. It is rather long, but I do recommend that everyone sees it. Regardless of the lack of editing and sub par timeline, it is a very good film and held my attention for over 2 hours.