Rocketman (2019)

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Plot

  • The audience is provided an on-screen dramatization a la Broadway based on the life of Elton John.

Pros

  • Music was obviously amazing.

  • Most everyone was a fantastic choice for their roles.

  • Turning songs into plot devices is a challenging thing but this movie succeeds.

Cons

  • Bryce Dallas Howard is the worst.

  • Taron Egerton should sing like himself and less like Elton John.

Final Thoughts

I know the two cons I’ve provided need some explanation. Let’s tackle the latter first. In a film where everyone in the film takes a stab at singing, it seems strange that an actor playing a character that we know to be Elton John is limited by the vocal stylings of the character. Taron Egerton has moments where his true voice comes out and they’re far more exciting than his parodied version of the character. It was a bit off-putting at points but luckily the songs are so good and Egerton does a passable Elton-esque impression. Now onto the part of the movie I do not get for the life of me. Bryce Dallas Howard was cast as Elton’s mother. I feel like her stage direction was “watch Dick Van Dyke for accent inspiration”. It was that bad. Every time she was on-screen, I cringed (both for how deplorable the character was but also the acting). Looking past those two issues, I really enjoyed the film the second time around. The first time I went, I was expecting a biopic framed like Bohemian Rhapsody. Play loose with a few facts and dates to produce a good story. Got it, fine with that. Instead, it’s a full-on Broadway musical. I was not prepared and subsequently did not appreciate it whatsoever. I have no issue with musicals but you don’t just thrust them upon someone. With some preparation, I was able to view it a second time in the right mindset and absolutely enjoyed it. Fans of musicals, the music of Elton John will really appreciate it, I feel.