FC @ Cannes 2019 – The ho-hum ‘Rocketman’, plus Mati Diop’s haunting ‘Atlantique’

Posted on May 18, 2019

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Read the full article on Film Companion, here: https://www.filmcompanion.in/cannes-film-festival-2019-rocketman-movie-review-mati-diop-haunting-atlantique/

Instead of focusing on one track, this biopic wants it all. The man is blotted out by all the bling.

I was a bit bummed when I found myself in a nosebleed seat for Dexter Fletcher’s Elton John biopic, RocketmanPiano Man would have been a better title, but then that’s a Billy Joel song — but it turned out for the good. The film is crammed with songs and it felt like watching a live concert from… a nosebleed seat. The music is why the movie exists. That would seem a redundant statement while discussing a musician’s story, but in this ho-hum movie, the glittery musical parts are the only ones that work. They get you going. They give you gooseflesh when you see the skeleton of a tune being played and you recognise the song. And why not! This isn’t the schmaltzy latter-day Elton of Nikita and Sacrifice and, heaven forbid, Can You Feel the Love Tonight. This is the early catalogue: The Bitch is Back and Crocodile Rock and buh-buh-buh-buh Bennie and the Jets.

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