The Greatest Showman.
Second viewing for LMW and first for me. I should start by saying the audience clapped at the end of the movie, so my opinion is obviously not representative.
I should also perhaps put in the disclaimer that I love Moulin Rouge. Still.
But this movie left me absolutely cold. I was waiting for it to end.
To me it wasn’t so much a movie as one thing happening after another. If you were unlucky enough to see the theatre production of Jolson, it felt a little like that.
I don’t have any pc problems with the story. It’s not a documentary. It’s a musical, for Pete’s sake, so I find any criticisms even broadly about accuracy as very silly.
No, my problems are that the characters are ridiculously undercooked. Tom Thumb, the bearded lady, the dark-skinned trapeze artist, main-ish characters that are given the smallest amount of backstory or none at all.
What is supposed to be a big moment late in the film, about equality and not letting others tell you how to live your life and so on, came off as completely unbelievable and more than a little tacky. It’s supposed to be…a great love overcoming prejudice. I felt like the guy could have left her in half an hours time without any problem at all.
And Barnum…very early in the film there’s a big deal made of how it’s all for his kids and that’s reinforced throughout.
His wife leaves him and takes the kids…and you don’t even find out that she’s taking the kids unti you see them in her parents house. And Barnum? Doesn’t seem too…well, not too…at all bothered by that.
The whole thing feels emotionally shallow.
Jackman in the role is…okay? He certainly doesn’t display any of the charisma you’d think necessary for the role. He’s just…nice. Driven, certainly, occasionally…insensitive, but mostly just nice.
The dance scenes are good. Particularly the barroom deal scene.
For the chorie.