Team Rocketman was out as a major presence in Los Angeles last night at the Greek Theater where Sir Elton was joined by Taron Egerton and the LA Symphony orchestra for a “live experience” of the film, and afterwards there were performances by Elton John and Egerton.
Rocketman came out early, and no one in the awards race has been all that sure about its awards chances, being that Bohemian Rhapsody swept through so successfully last year, and that the Best Actor race is so crowded already. But remember, Taron Egerton sang all those songs himself, quite a feat.
But I’ll you what – Rocketman is a better movie than Bohemian Rhapsody. I was swept up in it in unexpected ways. What I like most about it is Elton John’s awareness of self. Finally a biopic that doesn’t romanticize its lead. Instead, the film tells the honest truth about the kind of person Elton John was and is. He has gone through many different phases, obviously, as the film illustrates, but he acknowledges that he hasn’t been the best or nicest man in his life, takes responsibility for it and tries hard to give credit to those around him who helped become the success that he is.
Here is what we know about Rocketman – it will do well enough at the Golden Globes to give it a proper push into the awards race. Bohemian Rhapsody was driven, I think, by two factors. The first, that it was a wild success regardless of what happened with its original director, the second, that people love those songs. The songs do the heavy lifting. With Rocketman it’s a similar kind of thing. We know them, we love them, they are threaded through our collective DNA. And thus, as with Bohemian, these songs might help push the movie through, especially if Sir Elton keeps showing up “on the campaign trail.” Who can resist his actual presence? Not many.
I expect Rocketman to do well at the Globes, with a Best Picture musical (easy call as it’s ACTUALLY a musical), Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress. Where it goes from there, I do not know.
If you haven’t seen it yet, seek it out. I think you’ll be surprised at how good it is.
Here are some pics from last night and a little video.