Complete A-Z list

Rocketman  (DVD)


Stars: Taron Egerton, Jamie Bell, Richard Madden, Gemma Jones, Bryce Dallas Howard, Stephen Graham, Steven Mackintosh, Tate Donovan, Charlie Rowe, Matthew Illesley, Kit Connor

Director: Dexter Fletcher

Egerton (best remembered perhaps, from the two 'Kingsman' movies) hits all the right notes both singing and portraying Elton John warts (and there are plenty) and all in this unexpectedly entertaining musical biopic which - while there's no guarantee that it tells all - tells enough to be worth paying to see which, given today's high cost of filmgoing, is praise indeed.

The rousing Hollywood-style musical biopic, which has taken years to make it to the screen and failed - mercifully as it transpires - to do it as a sanitised-for-family entertainment Disney movie, now hits the screen a glitzy must-see entertainment splendidly served up on both sides of the camera.

Lee Billy Elliot Hall's strong screenplay introduces us to young musical prodigy Reg Dwight (Egerton) who, escaping an unhappy home life and hating his father, bonds with his long-time lyricist Bernie Taupin (Bell, first rate) and, promoted as a pop icon, finds international fame and fortune.

Which, happily as portrayed here, he deserves, by achieving stardom in the States and around the world in 80 ways, in a riveting blend of drama, melodrama and superbly-staged musical numbers worthy of Hollywood genre filmmaking at its most appealing.

Alan Frank

USA/UK 2019. UK Distributor: Paramount. Colour.
116 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 2, Violence/Horror 1, Drugs 3, Swearing 3.

Review date: 30 Sep 2019