‘Rocketman’: Early Reviews; New Elton John Duet With Star

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“Based on a true fantasy”

Elton John has recorded a new song with Taron Egerton, who portrays the legend in Paramount Pictures’ new biopic, Rocketman. The song, “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again,” was released May 16, the same day the film had its (out-of-competition) premiere at the Cannes Film Festival.

The film, with the tagline, “based on a true fantasy,” official opens May 31, while its subject is in the midst of his Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour.

John and Egerton attended the star-studded opening in France. Following the premiere, both received a reported four-minute ovation from the audience, which moved Egerton to tears.

Early reviews for the film have been favorable.

The pair then performed “Rocket Man.”

As of May 22, the reviews on Rotten Tomatoes had the film at 86% favorable. The headline in the 5-star review in The Telegraph (U.K.) blared: “A heart-racing, toe-tapping, deliriously entertaining triumph.” The Guardian‘s 3-star review said the biopic was “better at the tiaras than the tantrums.”

In a lukewarm review, The Hollywood Reporter wrote: “It’s largely to the credit of star Taron Egerton, who leans fearlessly into the role’s wild excesses, that the movie remains airborne.”

Fellow trade paper, Variety, wrote: “Rocketman seems mostly preoccupied with the surface idea of Elton: the outrageous wardrobe, the spectacular showmanship, and his relatively unusual status as an openly gay megastar.”

Listen to the new duet, “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again”

The 29-year-old Egerton does the actual singing of John’s iconic songs. An official video for the title song, performed by the actor, was released on May 1. Watch it below.

The studio describes the film as the “uncensored human story of Sir Elton John’s breakthrough years.”

On February 24, Egerton joined Elton John at the star’s AIDS Foundation Academy Awards viewing party. Following a preview of the trailer, the audience was taken by surprise when Egerton suggested an off-the-cuff performance of “Tiny Dancer.” Elton John joined from the audience to accompany him on the piano.

Watch their surprise collaboration on “Tiny Dancer” at the event

An updated trailer, with many new scenes, was released two days after the studio issued a behind-the-scenes clip on Feb. 19 that includes interviews with Egerton as well as Beatles reissues producer, Giles Martin, who serves as the film’s musical director. (Martin’s father, Sir George Martin, produced John’s “Candle in the Wind 1997″ tribute to Diana, Princess of Wales.)

“Elton said ‘I don’t think I’ve heard anyone sing my songs better than Taron’,” says Martin in the clip.

Watch the behind-the-scenes clip, released February 19

The Welsh actor is known for his role as Gary “Eggsy” Unwin in the 2014 film, Kingsman: The Secret Service, and its 2017 sequel, Kingsman: The Golden Circle, as well as 2016’s Eddie the Eagle and 2018’s Robin Hood.

Watch the official video for “Rocket Man”

Rocketman also stars Jamie Bell as lyricist Bernie Taupin, and Richard Madden as John’s manager John Reid.

Watch the new trailer, released February 21

John’s tour began September 8, 2018, in Allentown, Penn., and its first leg ran through mid-December in North America. (Read our recap of opening night here.)

A list of Farewell Yellow Brick Road dates is here. Tickets are available here and here.

The concerts feature 24 songs of the performer’s classic rock hits including such favorites as “Your Song,” “Philadelphia Freedom,” “Tiny Dancer” and “Burn Down the Mission.” One highlight has been a rollicking version of “Levon.”

Watch the original teaser trailer for Rocketman

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  1. Buckey
    #1 Buckey 20 February, 2019, 16:19

    I’m looking forward to seeing this film, if not in theaters, then at home. Reg has written some great music and a very fine voice. Bernie has written some excellent lyrics, as time has proven. I only regret that I didn’t go see Elton 20 years ago when he played just down the street from where I was living, and the prices were right as well!

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