Rocketman

Rocketman ★★★½

Rocketman isn't your typical paint-by-numbers biopic that throws Tipp-Ex over the less glamorous aspects of the person's life (or just the fact they were gay and liked to party - looking at you, Bohemian Rhapsody). The songs are built into the narrative, making it feel like more of a musical than just a series of stage performances, and these segments reach fanciful heights with a dream-like quality that stops them from ever becoming stale. Taron Egerton throws himself into the role, using his own singing voice and even allowing his own hair to be cropped for the increasingly receding hairline look, but without ever feeling like a caricature.

My main criticism is that it only really touches the surface with Elton's feelings of self-loathing, bitterness, and loneliness. The parts detailing his childhood and bad relationships felt a little glossed over and didn't tug at my heartstrings in the way they were intended, reminiscent of an X-Factor pre-audition sob story. But for someone who's not a massive fan of either biopics or Elton John, I had more fun with it than I expected.

Though I could've maybe done without the Han Solo-esque name reveal moment where Reggie/Elton briefly looks at a photo of The Beatles before deciding on the name John.

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