SPOILER ALERT AHEAD
I saw Rocketman today, and boy have I been waiting since I first heard about it last year.
This film made me feel every emotion you could want to. I cried, I laughed, I gasped. It made me feel things I didn’t know I could feel. I left with a sense of empowerment, and that I could talk about how I was feeling about my own circumstances in life. We open with Elton walking through doors aggressively to what someone would assume is a concert but it is to a group therapy session in which he reveals his full name and what he is an addict to. Alcohol, sex, drugs, and anger management issues are a cliche, but they are a cliche for a reason; substance abuse and sex addiction are common problems especially among celebrities. We see Elton trying to confess how he feels about his situation with a series of tears and outburst that amplified the severity of his issues that will later show throughout the story line. We see how he reacts to certain questions and how he tries to recover after having those outburst. We see it before the film really dives into the whole wonderful magical fantasy. It was very interesting the way songs tied into the story line. It was almost like they were in chronological order some how. Each song had a purpose for the scene and evaluated it to another level. Take the bitch is back he started to throw his chair, and rip parts of his outfit off out of anger only after finishing the song. Showing he is a bitch and he is there. He makes quick witted remarks and then instantly regrets them and finally defeated he says “I’m here to get better.” All of the Bernie scenes were a delight seeing someone who genuinely loved and cared for Elton no matter what Elton was doing or what he was. The scene in which he finds out that he’s gay is so pure and full of genuine love. Bernie only wanted the best for him. He watched him throw his life away and had to leave, and he regretted but it made Elton realize he doesn’t want to do this without him. It was a beautiful message but also a dark and twisted one. In the beginning Elton’s character asked “how does a fat kid like me become a rock star” and a man replies “you have to kill who you are now to be the person want to be” and that is exactly what Elton did. Every time someone would call him Reggie he would have one of his outbursts. He killed Reggie so he could be Elton. I loved the dynamic of Elton and Bernie it was refreshing being able to see men who have a genuine love for one another and do what they love. I believe Bernie’s character was there to remind Elton who he was when they first started. It was just about loving music and being able to write/play it every night for people who have never heard of him before. Other than that he really had no purpose he was just someone to help guide Elton back to where he was when time where simpler for them. This contains a sex scene involving Elton and John. John made Elton believe he loved him which sends Elton into a whirlwind of emotions and self-loathing. At one point he walks outside and sees an assistant giving John a blowjob in front of the pool boy causing him to go into another fit. Of all the fits Elton has throughout the film over John, this is one of the most justified. Just when he thought he was going to get him out of his house his mother shows up and he has to give a tour of his house to some old family friends. There isn’t a moment in which anyone asks if Elton’s character is okay other than Bernie. Even then Bernie leaves him for two woman. He sits and stews in self-loathing a lot of this film because nobody could see him for who he really is; A lonely man who knows the man he loves doesn’t love him back.
This brings us to an especially sad part of the film. He is sitting alone singing and a woman is listening and says “it must be hard baring your heart and soul all the time it must get lonely.” Something inside of Elton thought maybe he could see himself with a woman. Knowing she was able to see him in a different way. He married her and it cuts to one of the most heartbreaking scenes I’ve ever watched. They are having breakfast and they both are pouring their drinks and they both start to sob and Elton softly says “I’m so sorry” and she looks away and says “I know.” It was just utterly sad and beautiful at the same time. I have never seen this much range of emotion from one actor. I think Taron did Elton very much Justice in a lot of the intense scenes. The greatest and most powerful scene throughout this entire film is the mirror scene. It’s very heartbreaking to see him sit in front of the mirror going between “Reggie” and Elton. He snorts some cocaine and drinks some alcohol and turns himself Elton immediately. He believes he is only good as Elton when he is inebriated. That is later talked about when he is in rehab. He leaves from the mirror and is almost to the stage when Bernie comes over and asks “Why don’t you go out there without all the theatricalities” and he then says the most powerful line “People don’t pay to see Reginald Dwight they pay to see Elton John.” and that’s the sad truth of it. My final thoughts are that this was a beautiful and magical thrill ride exploring what Elton John had gone through and how he has recovered and is still standing today 28 years sober, married with two kids, and doing his very last sold out tour. I thank you Taron David Egerton for giving me this performance, and I thank you Sir Elton Hercules John for being alive.