Benjamin Maio Mackay
The Greatest Showman - 3.5 Stars
Shallow, yet shiny - The Greatest Showman is a musical spectacle.
Inspired by the imagination of P.T. Barnum, The Greatest Showman is an original musical that celebrates the birth of show business and tells of a visionary who rose from nothing to create a spectacle that became a worldwide sensation.
Vocally Hugh Jackman has never been great, in fact it seems that they lower his vocal and raise the music whenever he sings. However, Rebecca Ferguson, Michelle Williams, Zendaya, Zac Efron and Broadway star Keale Seattle are excellent singers. The original score by Pasek and Paul is catchy, imaginative and impressive. I left the cinema with the songs stuck in my head. The choreography is amazing too, the precision and timing is masterful. The cinematography too is great, but the direction lacks.
The writing is where the piece fails, its shallow with many flaws. Also, based on a true story has never been used more loosely. This is nothing like the truth, they glamorise the notoriously terrible Barnum and gloss over many of his personal flaws. This is more a reminder of the American Dream set to music, rather than the tale of showbiz.
Overall though with excellent songs this piece is sure to delight holiday audiences.
Review by Benjamin Maio Mackay