BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY was the one oddity I found on this year's Oscar list. Based on the life of Freddie Mercury (played brilliantly by Rami Malek) and in a smaller sense the band Queen, was a film that would be at its best summarized as "OK" and at it's worst, just plain awful and formulaic almost to the point of plagiaristic. That's not to say it shouldn't have its fans, which it has plenty of, but for an organization (The Academy) that celebrates excellence in the art of filmmaking, I am wondering which of Bryan Singer's peers would say this was a well-executed production. The narrative is truly a disaster that steals its structure straight from "Walk the Line", the editing is non-sensical and disorienting to a fault, the cinematography is good, but once you have failed in the editing room what difference does it make? It's like a child that took the most iconic photographs from a beautiful National Geographic collection and cut and pasted it into a sloppy collage.
This is a film made for a singular crowd: those that are looking for the movie video experience. The music is excellent. It is Queen after all. They hit the top 5 notes in the Queen catalog and for those that are looking for a dead-on Freddie Mercury impersonation and some truly great music, this is a film that will make you feel alive. It might not add anything to the cinematic language, but in terms of popcorn entertainment, you will have a good time. If you demand more from your music biopics, you will be miserable.
So much for being unbiased.
art by Zach Spivey