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'Bohemian Rhapsody' touches layers of emotions that make you sing along

Muthi Achadiat Kautsar
Muthi Achadiat Kautsar

The Jakarta Post

Jakarta  /  Sun, October 28, 2018  /  01:36 pm

I had it all planned out. Google Queen, learn more about who was in the band with Freddie Mercury, put as many of their songs on my playlist and listen to them at work starting two days before the screening date.

But none of this happened. I suddenly found myself sitting in the cinema minutes before Bohemian Rhapsody started, without a single new addition to what I have known about Queen: “We Will Rock You”, “We Are the Champions”, Mercury and how he died. I didn’t even know about his four extra teeth, and I thought that somewhere in the middle of the movie, he would have it fixed. I was that oblivious.

I’m glad my initial plan didn’t work out. There is no need to Google or study the songs beforehand. Getting to know Mercury, Brian, Rog and Deacy from this movie is much more fun than googling. Sorry, not sorry, Google.

And the songs, all the music-making portrayed in the movie […]? When Rami Malek said in the introduction to the movie that the only way to watch it is on the big screen, I could not agree more.

Queen’s performances reenacted in the movie not only entertain, they send shivers down your spine. Wrapped together by punchy dialogue about romance, the creative process and conflict, Bohemian Rhapsody is a movie that evokes different emotions. The audience is likely to smile, laugh, cry and sing along throughout.

Read also: Mercury biopic crowns enduring majesty of Queen

Dubbed the front man for Queen, Mercury is portrayed as someone who sees himself as being equal to his band mates. Spoiler alert. He even corrected a journalist who called him a leader at a press conference. Undoubtedly, however, it is Mercury and his life who take center stage in the movie. A highlight is his relationship with Mary Austin, the woman whom he dedicated the song Love of My Life to.

In spite of infamously living a colorful life as a gay man, Mercury is portrayed as having never stopped loving Austin. And in real life, I for one wonder, what if the rock star continued his relationship with her.

The complexity of Mercury’s relationship with Austin is almost the same as his decision to pursue a solo career. Often seem to be torn between missing his Queen family and excitement of living from one party to another, Mercury was a lost and lonely soul.

Bohemian Rhapsody culminates in the reenactment of Queen’s live performance where Mercury was wearing that white tank top and jeans, after he reunites with the band following his solo career. It was that part of the movie that shows the audience his showmanship and extraordinary ability to interact with concert-goers.

You will, however, need to find out yourself whether or not the reenactment moves the audience to a similar extent and whether you wish you were at that concert. You might leave the cinema feeling like a champion.

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