Movie Review : Bohemian Rhapsody (Malaysian Cinema)

When I first found out there was going to be a movie on Queen (the rock band) and it would be a biopic of one of my favourite singers of all time – Freddie Mercury, I was stoked. I’ve listened to their music since I was a toddler (because my dad had this vinyl record he loved to play ever since I was still in my mom’s womb, LOL!) and I grew up listening to music from the likes of Queen, David Bowie, Led Zeppelin, The Police, and many more.

So imagine my excitement when I heard there was going to be a movie about Queen and it was going to be named after one of my favourite songs of all time – Bohemian Rhapsody. Finally, my prayers were answered.

Bohemian Rhapsody Movie Premier, GSC 1 Utama

I got some free movie premier tickets to watch Bohemian Rhapsody last night at GSC 1 Utama (30th October) and was so excited to see the movie for myself!

I don’t know about you or other Queen’s fans, but I have read about Queen and Freddie Mercury’s life (read: personal life) since I was very young. I’ve known even back then that he was homosexual, and had rowdy lifestyle. He was in a rock band anyway – in what universe were rock band members saints?

I’ve also known very early in life that Freddie Mercury died from complications due to being HIV Positive. Yes, he had AIDS and it wasn’t very surprising. It was the 1980’s and AIDS was very “popular” amongst homosexuals and drug addicts (the ones that shoot up and share needles), and Freddie is as gay as it gets. I’m not saying it in a bad way, he was just a very sexually-active gay guy in his prime at the time the virus appeared.

We all know this (the fans anyway) and we all know it will definitely be in the movie, but I was just disappointed to see that there were many scenes (especially the gay scenes) that were censored.

I understand it is Malaysia’s policy to censor such scenes, but it kills the excitement, sitting there in the cinema seat and wondering what happened in the next scene because a big chunk of some scenes (where Freddie hooked up with his manager-cum-partner) was taken off the cinematic roll.

And then there was the movie itself. I’ve read many criticism about the movie, but especially about the timeline. I thought, maybe it wasn’t that obvious. But I left the movie premier agreeing to the critics, especially since the timeline (which to me is most important) was not true to the real life.

Ok, I assume it was because whoever it was that wrote the script or the people in charge to making this movie possible, wanted to build up the anticipation in the audience – starting from his mundane early life, to when he was in a heterosexual relationship, to when he realized he was gay, to his “dramas” and to the time he found out he had AIDS.

Yet, there was no emotion to the movie. If only the movie makers had extended the movie timeline to after the Live Aid Concert to when the time he found out he had AIDS (not before the concert, as depicted in the movie) and when his health started deteriorating up to the time he made the last video clip by Queen entitled, “These Are The Days Of Our Lives” which was only 3 months before his death, now THAT would probably give better emotional impact and be oscar-worthy.

The costume however, is AMAZING!!

Rami Malek was amazing as Freddie Mercury however, many of his steps and the way he move his hips are very similar to Freddie Mercury’s, complete with overbite and all. I loved the way he said “darling” and “my dear” too. But like I said above, I wished the movie had more “emotions” to it so that Rami Malek could at least be in the running for an oscar!

I love these four “misfits”. Certainly look very similar to the “original misfits”.

The other guys playing the band members were very similar looking to the original band member too, especially Ben Hardy who played Roger Taylor. Gwilym Lee who played Brian May also looked very similar to the original Brian May, with his lanky stature and big hair. Applaud to the casting director for bringing four guys like Rami Malek (Freddie Mercury), Gwilym Lee (Brian May), Ben Hardy (Roger Taylor) and Joseph Mazzello (John Deacon) together.

I understand that the movie was not just about Freddie Mercury but more about the band and their journey to being one of the biggest rock bands in the world, but I wished it had more feeling into it. Or maybe the “feeling” just didn’t reach me – as a long-time fan of the band, and especially a fan of Freddie himself.


However, my next favourite thing from the movie premier (apart from the delay in starting the movie because we had to wait for a local actor to show up) was the premier tickets! It was the Bohemian Rhapsody movie poster in a form of a mock-up CD and inserted in the mock-up CD sleeve too. I loved it! Going to keep this forever.

Anyways, how about you? Are you a Queen fan and if yes, how do you find the movie?

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