Sooo it seems like, after the superhero phase, we are getting into the biography entertainment phase. First the Queen movie Bohemian Rhapsody movie, now we have Elton John’s Rocketman.
Let me be honest here, I know both of them but I grew up hearing more about Elton John than Queen, mainly because my mum liked him more and Queen was more a band she enjoyed when her kids did not linger around. Elton John was one of the artists my mum and I love to jam to in the car and come on, I’m Still Standing is just a jam you won’t ever forget 😉
So when they announced Rocketman I was excited and I really wanted to know what it was gonna be like. I did not really do much research before the film so please note that I cannot judge how much truth they put into the movie.
Rocketman – General information
Rocketman is a 2019 biography-musical film starring Taron Egerton, Jamie Bell, Richard Madden and Bryce Dallas Howard. It tells the story of Elton John, from his child days to when he, well…became Elton John, I guess, and how he dealt with stardom and being one of the biggest stars out there. I don’t want to spoil too much of the ending really.
Well, one thing be said here, thankfully, Elton John is still alive. Apparently he really liked and appreciated the movie, that’s good to know 🙂 Also you notice: Compared to Bohemian Rhapsody the movie is much more open and focuses a lot on Elton John growing up and learning about the industry. Also note, that the movie is less biographical about the songs and a lot more musical. I’m quite sure, Elton John did not actually run around and start singing like a musical in real life…at least I think he didn’t…(but wouldn’t that be cool?)
Still the movie packs quite a biographical punch and shows you some things you might not know about Elton John or, for those who actually don’t know him (where did u live? behind a rock?), you get to know more about him.
Cast and Casting Decisions
Before I say anything else, I have to say Taron Egerton did an amazing job and seems to be an amazingly varied actor. I mean, there is a lot of difference between playing Elton John in Rocketman and playing Eggsy in Kingsman: The Secret Service. He does an awesome job as Elton John. Whether it is young and slightly naive Elton John or the experienced man who breaks under the heavy pressure put on him. Taron Egerton plays the singer convincingly and in a charming way and leads the film with a enchanting aura.
The rest of the cast is amazing too. Jamie Bell convinces as John’s best friend and song writer Bernie Taupin and while there may be moments you might want him to do things differently from what he does, you understand him and want to help him support Elton while also getting a happy end of his own.
I’ve seen Richard Madden in other movies and TV shows and while he did always convince in his role, he was never “awesome”. He was good and great and nice but not amazing. Well, I think he finally found a role he excels at. Even if the person he plays seems to be quite…well, not nice…he does an amazing job at portraying John Reid and showing his interactions with Elton John. He and Egerton really manage to give John and Reid chemistry while also putting something toxic in the relationship. It seems like one of those relationships that may seem great but are bad for one, if not for both, parties. It seemed pretty natural and convincing, helping to make the movie more real and dramatic.
Bryce Dallas Howard acts as Elton John’s mother and she does an awe inspiring job. There are a lot of moments where I just want to ask her “Really? Seriously?” but that’s more about the person she plays. The actress did an amazing job at portraying a mother you want to love and hate at the same time. It’s hard to portray a role like that but Bryce Dallas Howard did a good job.
Overall, the cast is great and I have to give high compliments to the casting directors too.
Visuals and Music
The visuals and the music, of course, two very important parts of a movie like this. They did exceptional. From the visuals of the terrific costumes to the downright breath-taking music sequences. Some of them felt a little short but overall all our favorite songs are there and you can just enjoy the music. There is enough space in between the songs to breath some conversations and story development until you are sucked into the songs again. The costumes may look silly sometimes (I mean, you all thought it) but Egerton, just like Elton John, pulls them off perfectly. From the colourful head set to the glittering baseball uniform, all of them don’t just fit the movie and story development but also the scenes. I mean, he comes into therapy with horns!! He knows he has done horribly and needs to get better and he is pretty much dressed as a devil breaking off his horns. If that’s not an underlying message, I don’t know what is. (there is also this saying where I’m from: If someone has too big an ego, he should chaff his horns. I think it fits well, if you take it as it was too much pressure for the singer and he has to get down a notch to get back up again. Thankfully he did ^.^)
Of course, the songs are nothing new, although it is sung by Egerton and the other cast and I really enjoyed his voice as well as how they did the music sequences: from the fast-forward growing up transition to the actual Rocketman sequence of one of the most shocking moments back to the stage. I also enjoyed the Crocodile Rock scene where he went from one sound to a total jam.
As you see, the visuals and songs mix well and fit together nicely. Just note, like I said, it is not a straight biography movie like Bohemian Rhapsody but more a musical movie. But even if you don’t like musicals it stills keeps drama and story and makes you watch with joyful focus.
Overall the movie is a joy to watch and I definitely recommend it. Especially if you like Elton John, one of the actors, musicals or just music biography movies. I think Rocketman is one of the movies where you definitely won’t leave the cinema with a bad feeling or with the feeling you didn’t get enough for your money. Rocketman may be very dramatic but it is fun to watch and I hope younger generations get the chance to learn more about Elton John along the way and start liking his music.
Oh and I LOVE the sunglasses. So many, so beautiful ❤