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BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY

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BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY

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Is this the real life or is this just fantasy? It is hard to tell as the biopic film begins to roll and Freddie Mercury heads towards the stage to perform for the exuberant crowd at Live Aid. Jumping up and down, shaking off the nerves, he heads out onto the stage. The scene cuts off and the title shows across the screen: Bohemian Rhapsody.

The movie continues, Farrokh Bulsara, later known as Freddie Mercury after he gets a name change, attends a concert of one of the local bands, who just happened to have lost their lead singer. He found the band after the concert to tell them how well they did, and it just so happened, their lead singer quit. He shows them his vocal range, and within a short amount of time, the band Queen is born. Following Queen through their rise to fame, the audience in the theater goes along on tours, sees how songs such as, “We Will Rock You”, “Love of My Life”, and, “Bohemian Rhapsody”, came to be. They also see the development in the relationship between Freddie, the band, and his best friend Mary. 

The movie captures it all. Farrokh Bulsara, was a man with a big dream as well as a big personality who wanted nothing more than to share his ideas on music with the world. It describes how Queen came to be and their rise to fame and follows them to their 1985 reunion at Live Aid. With many scenes that allowed the audience to feel sympathy and a connection to Mercury, it is so much more than a biopic story of gaining fame. Although Rami Malek helped to capture Mercury’s energy, he also had to embody his low points. Going into detail it shows a darker, deeper side of Mercury. The movie shows his battle with drugs, depression, having AIDS, being bisexual in a time before it was publicly accepted, and his battle after shunning Queen to start a solo career.  

Truly going the extra mile to match the reality of Queen singer, Freddie Mercury’s life, Malek transformed Mercury, even going as far as to mimic his every move from some of the real performances. With the stellar portrayals, it is no surprise that the movie has raked in over 774 million dollars worldwide. Malek prepared for the role for about a year and had to learn to embody Mercury’s energy and spirit. “What I really knew I needed was to capture his spontaneity. The man’s not choreographed. Every time he steps out onto a stage, no one knows what he’s going to do, and that’s what I knew I needed to tether myself too,” Malek told hollywoodreporter.com. Malek continued, “I realized, I can’t work with a choreographer, I need someone to help me with movement, someone to help me discover the impetus for why he does what he does. Why every flick of the wrist occurs with him in such an elegant, sometimes dainty and sometimes aggressive way, depending on his mood. I just had to find his humanity — what his conflicts were — and discover all the sides of him, because I knew there was more to Freddie Mercury than a man who holds an audience in the palm of his hand.” 

 As someone who knew nothing about Queen before attending the movie, I was skeptical. I was confused on why when there are so many other influential performers, why did Queen get a movie? However, the minute the movie started rolling, I realized. Queen is so much more than a band, and Bohemian Rhapsody is so much more than a movie. From all of the very out-there costumes at which Malek sported as Mercury, to the shows that had the audience engaged until the last note; the movie was truly an immersive experience. Before the movie I did not know who, Freddie Mercury was, but after seeing his heart breaks, his triumphs and his downfalls, it was as if I had been a fan from the beginning.

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