A candid tell-all story about a truly great musician and artist…
Rocketman succeeds somewhat where other biographical stories fall short because this film follows Elton John on a very personal and sometimes brutal level. First and foremost it’s a musical which is delivered in way best described as fantasy.
Lead man Taron Egerton whom I was yet to find a good film of until now has found a great way of not only embodying Elton John but also carrying it in his own style while still very much resembling the music superstar we all know. In fact the realism and brutality of fame intertwines brilliantly with a back catalogue of well known and sometimes melancholy songs that blend together to bring what is a fun immersive story.
We see Elton’s routes from his very early home life and interest in playing the piano. His mother played by the probably over glamourous Bryce Dallas Howard who is believable with an English accent. This is also where the absence of a Father figure emerges for young Elton while he tries to figure out his emerging talent. Soon the story transitions to Egerton’s portrayal where he meets long time lyricist and friend Bernie Taupin; the film does well in telling a story of two artists here; the perfomormer and the writer; something where a lot of bio’s fall short. Eventually they make their way over to the US where Elton’s performance at the LA Troubadour club is portrayed in a fantastical but real way showing the effect of his talent to a new audience. His rise to fame and fortune follows while the life of a Rockstar begins to take its toll.
Overall the premise of this film is delivered in an original reflective way as we are introduced to Elton in full bright orange garb as he sits down for group therapy. He tells the story as if he is in that therapy; from drugs, alcohol and even shopping addiction to even loneliness nothing is sugar coated in what is a great biopic about a great musical artist.
Even the next morning I found myself singing to myself.
The night worker is paid for their time but the currency is sleep. For every shift they work they are for the night to keep.
The entire world has gone to bed and then there’s us, the night worker’s who keep the place running, our appetite in tatters, our eyes tired and our bodies weary.
Keep the lights dimmed. Let the Coffee, tea and sugar keep our systems running.
Is there another soul out there? Sometimes my eyes play tricks, guess that’s just the fatigue or perhaps something else..
Torchlight down corridors and hallways that lay silent. Did the door behind just open? A vending machine, my beacon of light, don’t swallow my change, I need this, alright.
Time seems to crawl and I’m feeling adrift. I’m just waiting for the light to give me just a little lift. Find any way to pass the eternal time. All of this just for the extra dime.
Early morning sky brings that light, my stomach realises and comes back my appetite.
Soon we’ll go home past the ‘normies’ who work all day. While I’ll be in the dark trying to drift away.
Sensitive to light and tired for days. But I’ve always got plans, always.
I guess I like it but sometimes need to vent, for this truly is the night workers lament.
An interesting combination of crime mystery which eventually moves towards magic and vampires…
Main character and narrator Camille Bishop is a private investigator who has just been given the responsibility of taking on solo cases. There is a lot going on in her mind and life; from being involved with a good for nothing junkie boyfriend to still going through the motions of grieving for her deceased parents. Although Camille appears as tough she can’t seem to break away from the toxic relationship with ‘Jesse’ and always seems to give him another chance until events out of her control force her to break away.
The story unfolds slowly with the introduction of multiple characters that revolve around Camille from father figure/uncle ‘Ted’ to computer whiz ‘Q and even rockstar and latter love interest ‘Fray’ ‘; I found the greatest strength this book had was it’s array of characters and their interaction with each other. Very early on readers are teased that something is lurking in the shadows and watching Camille which eventually begins to suggest the existence of vampires.
Much of Camille’s journey reads and feels like a crime mystery which struggles to find a destination with the vampire stuff only briefly mentioned (although clever in execution) while the MC tries to move on in life. It isn’t until the final quarter that everything twists and becomes way more interesting. Revelations lead to answers about Camille’s mother and finally we see the prophecy part of ‘Prophecy Girl’.
From what begins as a very realistic crime caper becomes a story of magical powers and vampires; something I struggled a little to believe seeing as it was quite late introduced but overall made for an interesting read. The ideas of realistic crime being fused with magic and vampires is an odd but unique pairing. Author Ravin Tija Maurice has obviously worked hard to execute this and has done so by way of a well written novel.
4 Stars – A thank you to the author for providing a copy in exchange for a review. Looking forward to reading the sequel. Review also published on Amazon UK and Goodreads – Rock and roll man!
It’s been a month since I last touched any alcohol. I’ve never seen drink as a problem for myself, one can even joke it’s the solution, but I’m on a quest for better health and a better mind. Booze can be awesome, it makes you feel great, you become more confident, funnier and sometimes even more creative; not that I have ever drunk and wrote (I tried once albeit with dire consequences). Some of my fondest memories have been while sharing a drink of two with fine company. But the problem with something that makes you feel good or better about life is simple; you always want more until eventually one day you turn around and realise you have become the drunk in the room; something I cannot handle being named as.
I’ve learned this past month that there are two ways to completely stop drinking alcohol. Firstly you have to understand drinking is something I’ve come to enjoy in life so you must find something to replace that enjoyment, this in most instances has to be better than what you are replacing. My muse for booze replacement is simple and what I have always done; writing. In the past month I have torn into ‘Jack Thorn’ with 1000’s of words drafted. I also count reading and blogging under the writing umbrella; something I do all of the time now.
Secondly and this compliments the fist: Stay busy. I’m a shift worker and much of the time my hours are constant, working and having a job is great. Nobody can really drink on the job or on the commute home (unless you have a big time problem). The theory is that alcoholism has no cure and neither does addiction; even though I am not addicted or have a problem, I found a way to stop doing something that I overall enjoy but in long game terms is destructive. The remorse of the next morning is another huge factor which has turned me from getting drunk. The problem is I have a good memory of my antics the evening before and so I sometimes spend up to a week after reliving and cringing at my conduct. I said to myself ‘this is not me’ and it isn’t because 28 days without something you enjoy proves it isn’t needed and it also proves I am in control.