Okay, so allow me to preface this particular review with the fact that I wouldn't consider myself a big fan of Queen. I like a lot of their music, they've always had my respect as a successful band, and I've always known what happened in the end with Freddie Mercury. Otherwise, what I don't know about Queen could probably fill a library. Therefore, I'm reviewing this as a movie only, and not so much a study in historical accuracy. So, if you've come to see how well the film portrays the life and times of Freddie and the rest of the band, I'm afraid I can't totally help you.
A some might guess, and getting right to the point, this is a biopic about Freddie Mercury (Rami Malek) and, to a lesser extent, the rest of Queen. It largely covers how the band formed, problems the band had, what made them successful with their overall originality, Mercury getting AIDS, his home life, his love life, and yeah. Some going into this will imagine it more to be about the band than just Mercury, but it's totally a Mercury movie.
Although it gave me a newfound enjoyment of their music, they don't do much here about diving into a lot of their lesser known stuff. We consistently hear the same songs we've heard for years on the radio, and when and how the songs were made. That's all well and good, but I hoped to hear some of the stuff I was more unfamiliar with. Consider it a nit-pick on my part.
The film does come across, understandably, as a bit of a "paint by numbers" deal to some. It's your basic premise of; The band forms, the band's successful, the band has problems, the band breaks up, one former band member gets sick, the band (sometimes only attempts) to reform, etc. The thing is, though, if that's how it went down, that's the story we're probably gonna get. One could make many comparisons here to 'Straight Outta Compton', replacing the racial aspect with the gay aspect (although far less harsh this time around).
The film is actually punctuated with a pretty great final scene, and it honestly did make me wanna dig through some music and, again, search for some of the less-listened-to songs from their library. All in all, I enjoyed what I got here, even if it may have felt just a little slow at times. I thought the performances were great, but again, I don't necessarily know enough about Queen to say whether they nailed it or not. I'd be curious to hear what a true blue Queen fan has to say about it.
I personally meet this movie somewhere in the middle. It didn't blow me away with its greatness, but I appreciated it, learned a thing or two about a band I knew little about, and definitely enjoyed that whole final scene. Whatever I thought was kinda bad about it seemed to always get balanced out by something good. It doesn't require the big screen experience, but it might be worth your time at some point, if you're ever curious.