Bohemian Rhapsody Review – Cinemaholics Episode #89

bohemian rhapsody

We tend to be mostly polite and civil during episodes of Cinemaholics, but this is an outlier of an episode. Things got heated during our discussion of Bohemian Rhapsody, the new biopic about Freddie Mercury and the band Queen during their rise to fame in the 70s and 80s. Long story short, I enjoyed the film but wished it could have been a masterpiece deserving of Mercury’s legacy. Will and Maveryke had far larger issues, making for a fascinating discussion around how films depict homosexuality, especially regarding true-life stories.

As you can imagine, though, things loosened up quite a bit as we got into our other reviews, to the point where we were laughing almost too much for me keep the conversation coherent during editing. We hope you enjoy our discussions around SuspiriaThe Nutcracker and the Four RealmsThe Haunting of Hill HouseWildlife, and Boy Erased.

Next week: We need your help deciding which film to do for our featured review. The choices include The Girl in the Spider’s WebDr. Seuss’s The Grinch, and Overlord. You can also become a patron and vote your decision in our weekly Patreon poll.

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14 replies to Bohemian Rhapsody Review – Cinemaholics Episode #89

  1. I didn’t really care for this movie honestly, but I’m kind of with Jon. I don’t see how the movie shies away from homosexuality or the AIDS stuff. I found it to be a fairly thorough theme of the film with Freddie struggling to reconcile his sexual identity with fame and keeping his loved ones close. This is a movie where the climax has him coming out to his parents with Jim Hutton in the room, yet I keep reading reviews that say this movie is “afraid” of Freddie Mercury’s homosexuality.

    • Agreed. I listened to this episode yesterday and actually liked the movie a lot. I’m a massive Queen fan and like Will, I didn’t really learn anything about Freddie we didn’t already know to some extent. But this movie was so good at capturing the energy of the band and how Freddie’s personal private life slowly became more and more apparent to his public persona. I’m really curious what’s missing here for Maveryke and Will on the homosexuality stuff. There was way more of it than I was expecting honestly so I was pleasantly surprised.

  2. I liked this movie?

  3. Let me be clear. I thought this movie was incredibly boring and far too long. I also agree that going deeper on Freddie’s homosexuality might have helped. But I think it’s going too far to say this movie doesn’t go deep at all, or that it does Freddie’s personal life a disservice.I like Will’s idea of just doing a Live Aid film with pastiche moments from the band’s history informing each song and chapter. THAT could have been something really special.

    • Holy shit that would have been brilliant.

  4. The film is rightfully honest about how Freddie was in a longtime straight relationship with Mary Austin but becoming more honest about his homosexuality certainly created problems in his life, rather than pretend everything was easy or the opposite, like it was a joyless constant struggle. In real life, it’s a struggle, speaking from experience. What I appreciated in this movie (which for the record is pretty cheesy and could have been way better) is that they took creative liberties with Jim Hutton showing up earlier to drive home the point that Paul represented the wrong way for Freddie to grapple with his sexual identity while Jim represented the positive way, namely the way he could mold it with his love for friends and families. That scene where Freddie comes out to his parents with Jim spoke to me and nearly brought me to tears. Sorry, when I hear this complaint that the film sanitizes homosexuality, as a gay man myself I think it’s wildly off base. Yes it’s PG-13 and they have to keep the explicit stuff at bay, but the movie leaves no doubt Freddie Mercury was a gay man who died loving another gay man who accepted all sides of himself.

  5. The movie has this attitude of “if only Freddie was straight.” THAT’S the problem.

  6. This movie was so watered down and safe, but I kind of dug it anyway. It really is just fine if you’re a big fan of the band. I probably won’t see it again anytime soon. (reading these comments, I won’t dare jump in on the gay stuff. Seems like everyone is watching completely different movies or something).

  7. I would actually argue you should know as much as possible about Queen BEFORE seeing this movie. The pacing makes it really hard to follow along. That Rami Malek performance is incredible, though.

  8. And to think I came here looking for a Boy Erased conversation.

  9. The real Boy Erased here was Freddie Mercury.

  10. Definitely a cookie-cutter movie, but Rami Malek’s performance is so spot on and that Live Aid set piece is pure movie magic. I can’t believe it held my attention for so long after such a long film.

  11. Suspiria is my favorite movie of 2018.

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