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The Greatest Showman Review

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Alexis Tavakoli

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America is the birthplace of a particular film genre–the musical. And “The Greatest Showman”, a new movie musical with original music by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, is the newest in this unique American family. The movie’s plot follows the life of P.T Barnum played by Hugh Jackman. This character is credited with being the inventor of circus performances. The movie begins with Barnum as a young boy struggling with poverty and not being able to be with the love of his life due to social class distinctions and boundaries. Zendaya and Zac Efron also appear in this musical as each other’s love interests. Michelle Williams and Rebecca Ferguson are featured as Barnum’s wife and the famous singer Jenny Lind.  These characters battle with prejudice in the 1800s and perform songs such as “This Is Me” which won a Golden Globe for Best Original Song. In addition to singing, ‘The Greatest Showman’ also contains a range of acrobatic and dance performances.

“The Greatest Showman” is a family movie that can be enjoyed by all ages. In addition to great singing and dancing performances, many scenes tug at the heartstrings. There are few critiques on the content of the film; one movie critic complained that there was an artificial ‘feel’ to the movie. Stephanie Merry from The Washington Post writes, “everything about the movie feels artificial, from the singers’ blatantly Auto-Tuned voices to the CGI acrobatics.”

While there are aspects of the movie that are not completely real, the feeling a moviegoer experiences when they leave the theater is anything but fake. Helen O’Hara from Empire Magazine stated, “Jackman and the entire cast are deeply committed to entertaining and leave you feeling an old-school musical thrill.” 

The theme of the movie musical itself is to never forget yourself and to embrace your differences because that is what makes you special. And that message is a timely one to share.

The Greatest Showman Movie Poster

 

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The Greatest Showman Review