Directed by Lin-Manuel Miranda
Stars: Andrew Garfield, Alexandra Shipp, Robin de Jesús, Joshua Henry, Vanessa Hudgens, and Bradley Whitford
Tick, Tick...Boom, was more than just an outstanding musical. This felt like a once in a lifetime experience. Something special as a tribute to a truly special individual, Jonathan Larson. Everything about this felt larger than the average musical and made for an incredible viewing experience.
On the cusp of his 30th birthday, a promising young theatre composer navigates love, friendship, and the pressures to create something great before time runs out.
Knowing very little about the real life Jonathan Larson, I was pleasantly introduced to the mans life and dedication to his craft. The strong story telling and clear admiration that Miranda has for Larson’s struggles to craft a play, living broke in New York, and the constant personal relationship issues that formed from putting all the energy into his writing and art. Even without the songs, which are all absolutely perfect and set their tones effectively, the film is so strong. The writing is solid, and we get a story that anyone can relate too- you don’t have to be involved in theatre or show business to understand the dedication and determination to do something great with ones life before its too late.
The songs as stated above are all brilliant, and each one is super catchy. I think the first two songs that play are by far my favorites and both have been played a handful of times on Spotify already. As we get further into deeper topics such as heartbreak and the HIV/AIDS epidemic of the time period- the songs carry even more weight and emotion with each lyric and each actors face carries this great weight about the subject manner that they are singing about.
Andrew Garfield delivers one of the best performances of the year. Theres no question in my mind, that he has to be in this years Best Actor race. Every scene he’s fully dedicated to the craft, and he gets lost in the role as Jonathan Larson. Robin De Jesús should be getting more talk about his performance as Michael, as on a shot for shot basis his performance was right up there with Garfields. Whitfords role is small as Stephen Sondheim but he dominants the screen with his presence through looks alone. Both Alexandra Shipp and Vanessa Hudgens deliver in their roles as well, and each time they got a moment to shine- they took advantage of it and ran with the screentime as scene stealers.