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The Legacy of Queen Through Modern Cinema: Bohemian Rhapsody

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The Legacy of Queen Through Modern Cinema: Bohemian Rhapsody


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By: Ryder Rasmussen ’21

The British rock band, Queen, has gone down as a legendary group with hits known around the world such as We Will Rock You, We Are The Champions, Killer Queen, Crazy Little Thing Called Love, Another One Bites The Dust, Under Pressure, Radio Ga Ga, and of course Bohemian Rhapsody, along with many more. Considering how many songs the band produced in their time that are loved by so many people, it’s surprising that it’s taken until 2018 for there to be a biopic about the band (which is fittingly named Bohemian Rhapsody). The film covers not only the group’s rise to fame, but places the main focus on the their iconic frontman, Freddie Mercury, and his personal struggles, taking place from the group’s formation in 1970 all the way to their epic performance at Live Aid in 1985.

Rami Malek, most well known for his role as Elliot Alderson in the hit TV show Mr. Robot, plays the role of Freddie Mercury. In Mr. Robot, Malek portrays a man with severe depression and social anxiety, the complete opposite to Freddie Mercury, someone with an extroverted, loud, and out-there personality, so some might find it hard to see Malek playing Mercury so well. After awhile into the movie, you forget that you’re watching someone play Mercury; it feels as though it’s really him. As for the rest of the cast, everyone gives great performances, but Malek definitely stands out from the rest and is expected by many to be nominated for best actor at the Oscars for his role. The music for the film is great as well, with a long selection of songs that best sum up Queen over the years, along with little references to lesser known songs throughout.

The film has received criticism from some critics who say there are too many inaccuracies in it. In my opinion, a biopic shouldn’t be judged too harshly for inaccuracies to what actually occurred in real life. There’s a difference between biopics and documentaries. Documentaries give facts and and show exactly what happened. Biopics have a bit more freedom and try to create a good story while taking some inspiration from what really happened. And in this film, while certain events are dramatized and the timeline is a little out of order, you still leave the theatre with the main ideas of what took place in real life.

Bohemian Rhapsody features an excellent cast and an outstanding lead performance. While it changes things up a bit, it still represents who Queen is and what their story is. Queen fans should definitely check this out, along with people who aren’t as familiar with the band.

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The Legacy of Queen Through Modern Cinema: Bohemian Rhapsody