FIRST of all, I love this movie. This is the kind of film you see with friends who love Queen’s music as much as you do.
Not only will you enjoy the great songs, you will also enjoy the process of how they were composed. At times, you feel compelled to even sing along to some of these anthems.
However, storywise, it barely skims the surface of what drives frontman Freddie Mercury (the main focus of the story, and who died due to complications from AIDS), and the rest of the band.
The movie starts with Freddie (Malek) preparing to go onstage to perform at the Live Aid concert in 1984.
It then shifts to the past, a brief glimpse of Freddie’s aimless life and how he is essentially a disappointment to his strict father.
While at a bar, he enjoys the performance by college band Smile and offers to take over as lead singer when the band’s lead singer quits.
With Freddie as lead, and together with lead guitarist Brian May (Lee), drummer Roger Taylor (Ben Hardy), and bass player John Deacon (Joseph Mazzello), the band starts landing more gigs.
Freddie renames the band Queen and gets the boys to record their first album. Their demo album lands them a contract with a top music label and the attention of a top management company.
This film also touches on the tension among the band members, and Freddie’s issues with his sexuality.
But the best parts of the film are how Queen created some of its biggest hits, and also the special relationship Freddie shared with Mary (Boynton), a woman he married briefly but maintained a lifelong friendship with.
Malek is brilliant as Freddie but he does look much smaller than the late singer. The filmmakers have also taken a lot of liberties with the storyline for the sake of dramatic effect.
But like I say, if you go in for the music, you will not walk away disappointed especially with the superb ending. However, if you are hoping to learn more about Freddie Mercury and Queen, you may end up disappointed.