I recently saw two of the first blockbuster films of the summer: Rocketman, starring Taron Egerton and Godzilla: King of the Monsters, starring Godzilla.
WARNING: SPOILERS IN REVIEWS
More of a jukebox musical than biopic, Rocketman comes from director Dexter Fletcher, who took over directing duties on Bohemian Rhapsody after Bryan Singer was fired from the film. The film is visually stunning, and Taron Egerton has the look and sound of Elton John down. While the timeline is a bit off (think similar to TV’s The Goldbergs), the songs and dance sequences are top notch.
Rocketman boasts a stellar supporting cast as well with Jamie Bell portraying John’s longtime songwriting partner Bernie Taupin, Bryce Dallas Howard as John’s mother Sheila, and Richard Madden as John’s manager and lover John Reid.
The film portrays John’s early years through his stint in rehab in the early 80s. The soundtrack boasts over 20 songs including a duet with John and Egerton during the end credits. Some critics think that film shies away from John’s sexuality, however, I feel like it was one of the main influences throughout the film through his relationship with Reid and his body language around his male dancers.
Granted, I wasn’t alive during the peak of John’s career, but it was fun to relive and see his journey to stardom while being amazed by the accuracy of the set pieces to the 70s.
While it is hard to top Bohemian Rhapsody, Rocketman delivers fun fantastical sequences and is a must for any Elton John fan. 9.0/10
Godzilla: King of the Monsters:
It seems like WB likes to produce a lot of filler films. Much like Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Godzilla: King of the Monsters seems like a passable film used to set up Godzilla vs Kong next year. While the action scenes were good and there were a lot of new Titans (17 total!), the film felt much like any other action film the last few years.
What set 2014’s Godzilla apart was director Gareth Edwards’ visual style. The viewer always felt in peril throughout the film, with unique camera angles and color palettes. While Michael Dougherty does a passable job, you could’ve replaced him with any of the Fast & Furious directors and not noticed anything different.
King of the Monsters also adds a pretty new cast to the fold with Kyle Chandler, Vera Farmiga and Millie Bobby Brown replacing the stiff Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen. While Farmiga’s Dr. Emma Russell felt very much like Thanos, Chandler serves up a strong performance as Emma’s ex-husband. Sally Hawkins, Ken Watanabe, and David Straitharn reprise their roles from the last film.
Pacific Rim > Pacific Rim: Uprising : Godzilla > Godzilla: King of the Monsters