Tag Archives: Mike Myers

Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) Review

Time: 134 Minutes
Age Rating: 860940[1] Offensive language, sexual references & drug references
Cast:
Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury/Farrokh Bulsara
Lucy Boynton as Mary Austin
Gwilym Lee as Brian May
Ben Hardy as Roger Taylor
Joseph Mazzello as John Deacon
Aidan Gillen as John Reid
Tom Hollander as Jim Beach
Allen Leech as Paul Prenter
Mike Myers as Ray Foster
Director: Bryan Singer and Dexter Fletcher

Bohemian Rhapsody is a movie based on the true story of the rock band Queen’s journey from the start of the group to their legendary performance at the Live Aid concert at the Wembley stadium. The movie revolves around the groups lead singer Freddie Mercury’s (Rami Malek) part of the story and his life from being an outcast immigrant in society to a world famous artist and his struggles trough the journey of it.

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I was mildly interested in Bohemian Rhapsody as a fan of Queen. I wasn’t sure about Bryan Singer directing (the main reason actually not being his directing skill) but the appeal of seeing Rami Malek play Freddie Mercury and really just the band on the big screen was just irresistible, so despite some mixed reception of the movie, I was holding out hope. I actually ended up liking Bohemian Rhapsody a lot more than I thought I would. It could’ve been better but I was entertained by it and Rami Malek was great as Freddie Mercury.

A large part of the criticisms are about the accuracies and portrayals and so I’ll just address that part first. As much as I like Queen, I’ll admit I don’t know a ton about them, so people who have much more knowledge about the band will probably pick up on some more inaccuracies than me. I did find there are some moments that did seem ‘movie-like’, like moments that probably never happened in real life and was just done for the movie as a wink to the audience. There isn’t a ton of those but they really do stick out when they happen. Also, there’s a bit where they come up with the song “We Will Rock You” and even I knew that they created it a number of years before when that scene takes place in the timeline. However one of the biggest ones I’ve heard after watching the movie was that Mercury’s AIDS diagnosis happens years later on than when the movie shows it. The main reason seems to be that the movie wanted to address the AIDS aspect but also wanted to end at the Live Aid, so they tried to rearrange events so that they could have both. With everything considered, I’m taking the accuracies somewhat loosely, most of it is probably accurate, but some of it isn’t. I know that originally there was going to be a Freddie Mercury film with Sacha Baron Cohen, which was going to be very much in depth with him and really go all the way, but while that sounds interesting, Bohemian Rhapsody isn’t that movie. This movie was more like a tribute and celebration of the band and Mercury, and in that it really works. Besides, just because we recently had a Freddie Mercury/Queen movie doesn’t mean that in the future we won’t get that sort of uncensored movie focusing on him/them.

Now for the actual movie. Bohemian Rhapsody doesn’t delve too much into Queen (its mostly focussed on Mercury) but it does try to cover a lot of what happened with them from 1970 to 1984, and so in that it does cover a lot of things briefly. It does feel like they selected a few things that they wanted to cover and were like “Wouldn’t it be nice to see them come up with Another One Bites the Dust and show how it happened?”. With that said, I liked seeing how certain things came to be, even if only scratched the surface of Queen and is well known (because as I said, I don’t know too much about Queen, despite being a fan). However, I think that the film is strongest whenever it shows the different sides to Freddie Mercury. One thing that some biopics tend to fall into is that they sanitise everything about the people their based on, but they don’t really do that here. They show Freddie for the musical genius he is but they also show his shortcomings and flaws, as well as the conflicts and problems that he has. Bohemian Rhapsody was about 2 hours and 10 minutes long but it never felt too long, it always had my attention from start to finish and I was never bored.

Rami Malek is fantastic as Freddie Mercury. When someone is portraying such an iconic person, they can often just slip into doing an imitation but Malek never falls into that. He really just becomes Freddie Mercury on screen and over time you just forget that its Rami and just see Freddie. Obviously the singing isn’t actually Malek’s but they did a great job at making him look like he’s doing it. He has the same onstage and offstage energy, the voice, everything of Freddie Mercury, really great performance. The rest of the cast is good as well. The rest of Queen, Gwilym Lee as Brian May, Ben Hardy as Roger Taylor and Joseph Mazzello as John Deacon were great, the 4 of them were really convincing in their roles and played off each other well. Other actors like Aidan Gillen, Lucy Boynton, Tom Hollander, Allen Leech and even Mike Myers were good, and served their roles well.

Now this movie is actually directed by two people, Bryan Singer initially and then later he was replaced by Dexter Fletcher. I didn’t notice any differences in the direction but it is flashy and entertaining. When it comes to the band performances, it’s flashy and entertaining to watch but you can see that they are restraining things, cutting things a little short, you’re almost just seeing them in montages and all that. Part of it is really because the movie is building up to The Live Aid performance in the last act, and that payoff is really great to see. We get to see a few songs from the crowd and from the stage, that whole sequence is really one of the highlights of the movie. With all that, Bohemian Rhapsody is really best seeing in a theatre on a big screen and speakers. It really was an experience watching Queen perform the songs and hearing them.

Bohemian Rhapsody is a little by the numbers and nothing special when it comes to music biopics but I had a good time with it, I had fun with it. Even for what it was going for, it could’ve been better, its not quite the Queen biopic that we wanted but I still liked it and there are some good parts to it. At the very least its worth checking out for Rami Malek’s fantastic performance as Freddie Mercury.

Terminal (2018) Review

Time: 90 Minutes
Cast:
Margot Robbie as Annie/Bonnie
Simon Pegg as Bill
Dexter Fletcher as Vince
Mike Myers as Clinton/Mr. Franklyn
Max Irons as Alfred
Director: Vaughn Stein

In the dark heart of a sprawling and anonymous city, two assassins carry out a sinister mission, a teacher battles a fatal illness, an enigmatic janitor and a curious waitress lead a dangerous double life. Murderous consequences unravel in the dead of night as their lives all intertwine at the hands of a mysterious criminal mastermind who is hell-bent on revenge.

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Terminal looked like it could be something good, with people like Margot Robbie and Simon Pegg involved, and from the trailer it looked like it was interesting with a very stylish look. However, from what I heard from many people, the movie really doesn’t live up to any of its potential and was just plain bad. Nonetheless I was curious about it and still wanted to check it out, and having seeing it now, I can confirm that it doesn’t live up to the hype. It feels like the filmmakers tried to utilize a combinations of directors/writers to create a stylish thriller with twists and turns just for the sake of twists and turns. However, none of it comes together to work at all. Not all of it is bad, some of the actors are good, and is has a nice aesthetic and cinematography but unfortunately it’s not enough to save this movie.

As I said earlier, you can really see this movie trying to imitate so many other filmmakers’ styles’ but it doesn’t work. I’m not quite sure how this script got greenlit, it feels unfinished and even experimental, like the writer was trying out some ideas in a script and this was the first draft. First of all, this movie is needlessly convoluted. This movie is supposed to be very mysterious and have twists and turns with a noire feel to it but it doesn’t execute it correctly. It jumps between so many places and locations. It’s like they are trying to pull off a Pulp Fiction/Tarantino-esque script, without it being particularly smart and not jarring. Very early on it’s extremely confusing what’s going on and at a point you just stop caring about what’s going on and just accept that you’re not going to understand a lot of what’s going on. Granted once you see all the twists happen and the payoff, it makes the movie slightly better but at that point you’ve stopped caring about what was happening. None of the twists are satisfying outside of the fact that you can finally know what is going on. Not even the end is satisfying, you just want the movie to feel over because you feel underwhelmed by it all. Second of all, this movie tries so hard to be witty and smart with the dialogue and comedy and like 90% of it doesn’t work. It’s like they are trying to do a Guy Ritchie script but without it being good (which unfortunately happens way too often with some movies than it should). You can see this particularly with two assassins played by Dexter Fletcher and Max Irons with so much forced banter between them and it just becomes annoying. The movie however seems to think that its funny and entertaining because they just won’t stop with it. However the dialogue has more issues than just that, there is so much exposition dumps in most of the dialogue scenes, it’s really quite astounding, to the point where you just get bored. Also, some of the dialogue is really quite bad.

Third of all, the characters aren’t likable or interesting at all, so there’s no reason to really care about what happens to any of them. They are also very one note and don’t display a range of personalities. I’m fine with movies having just reprehensible characters but they need to have something to them that’s interesting, likeable or entertaining, otherwise the audience won’t be willing to care about what happens to them. Last of all, it’s just not interesting. With characters that are 2 dimensional at best, dialogue that’s exposition heavy and fails at its heavy handed attempts to be witty and a story that is just jarring and partially incomprehensible for no reason, it’s hard to get into. Most of all though, it doesn’t feel like they are trying to tell a story, it feels like they’re just having twists for the sake of twists. It doesn’t help that the plot meanders a whole lot and doesn’t seem to be leading to anything (with the exception of one twist). This movie is 90 minutes long and honestly, I’m glad that it’s that length. Because I can’t imagine having to watch any more of Terminal than the average movie runtime, even with that short runtime it felt pretty long.

One thing that the trailer did get right was Margot Robbie would be one of the best parts of the movie, and that’s definitely apparent here. In Terminal she uses a lot of her Harley Quinn craziness and charm here to great effect, the movie gives her lots of opportunities to chew the scenery. With that said, it’s not like one of her best performances, but she is having fun in the role and is giving it her all. Simon Pegg was also pretty good in his role here, he and Robbie have the closest thing to an interesting dynamic pairing of characters when it came to dialogue heavy moments (much more than the previously mentioned assassins played by Dexter Fletcher and Max Irons anyway). The rest of the cast don’t fare as well. I’m not exactly sure why Mike Myers is in this movie but for most of the movie he felt quite out of place, and really doesn’t get to show off or do much until like the last moments of the film. All the actors here are trying but only some of them come out giving okay performances. However like I said, none of the characters are particularly interesting and are very one note, so there’s only so much that these actors can do in their roles.

Terminal is absolutely stunning looking, with the colours, the lighting, use of neon, production design, it is a beautiful movie to look at. With that said, I can’t really say that the direction overall is great. The movie is incredibly stylish but at times the movie is trying way too hard to be stylish, especially with the scene transitions, that by the hour mark you just feel completely over it. It’s like its trying to be a Nicolas Winding Refn but only with the stunning cinematography. Some of the editing also is quite jarring and is made all the more worse by the constant time and location jumps in the story itself.

Aside from Margot Robbie, Simon Pegg and some nice cinematography, Terminal was a very underwhelming movie, with a messy and unfocussed script that feels like a lot of ideas and “cool things” thrown together. It’s not interesting, the characters are one note and you don’t care about them, the story is obnoxiously overconvoluted and throughout the whole thing, you really get the feeling that Terminal thinks it’s way better, smarter and funnier than it really is. The neon aesthetic and style is not enough to carry the movie, nor is the dozen twists and dialogue heavy and exposition dump scenes. I don’t think it’s terrible, I have seen way worse but this still isn’t a good movie at all. It is only 90 minutes long, so I guess you aren’t wasting too much time if you choose to check Terminal out, but I don’t think it’s really worth it.