By Cynthia Bujnicki
What a fantastic film, but not wholly accurate. But we’ll get into that a little more in a bit.
Let’s all acknowledge the fantastic casting of this film first and foremost. The fact that the cast looks almost identical to the original band members at the time is impressive. But more than that, the camaraderie that they have with one another, the cast members, the powerful, strong way they brought to life the dynamics and chemistry between the real band members was terrific. I will say that’s probably something else that the film lacked a little bit about. Yes, this is a film that is supposed to be mostly about Freddie Mercury, but it’s also supposed to be about the band in some ways, and the strength between the band members, the love and family like dynamics between the film should have been captured in stronger ways throughout the film.
There is no doubt that the film is good, the acting is fantastic, hands down. Rami Malek is impressive and captured the energy and conflict that was Freddie. He caught who he was, the charisma, the talent, and brains as well as the power behind his performances. That’s what makes the film so captivating, besides the music and seeing how it all came together. Seeing Mercury’s story come to life was empowering, but for fans who know about Mercury’s lifestyle and history, well we all know that it was grittier and darker than what Drama, on the film.
Now, on the one hand, considering today’s political and societal climate, it’s understandable why the film decided to PG-up the film and story. They didn’t want to be too explicit and risk alienating their audiences. That’s fair, but then that takes away from the accuracy, from Mercury’s struggles and that is, in some ways, unfair to his legacy.
There is also the fact that the film fudged some historical facts about the band Queen and some of the songwriting. It was pretty accurate in the way that it showed Mercury as quite the diva, which would create some tension with the band members, and as for the rest of the cast and the way they channeled their energy perfectly, channeled their dynamics perfectly.
When all is said and done, it’s the acting that saves the movie, the acting, the performances, and the way the cast captured the energy of the band so perfectly. That’s what I loved about the film. How it told the story wasn’t perfect, but it had the heart to tell the story, it captured the essence of who Freddie was as a performer and a human being. (★★★★☆ | B+)
— Film Credits —
Directed by Bryan Singer
Screenplay by Anthony McCarten
Distributed by 20th Century Fox