Where did that come from, Andrew Garfield?
Mr. Garfield stars in Tick, Tick… Boom! for Netflix, and he stuns.
Lin-Manuel Miranda directs the feature, based on the musical of the same name by the late Jonathan Larson.
Tick, Tick… Boom! never made it to Broadway, performing only off-broadway.
Known for Rent, Larson’s work has seen plenty of acclaim.
Miranda’s new take on Tick, Tick… Boom! turns Larson’s simple stage musical into a sweeping and engaging 115 minutes.
Everything was beautiful; from the sets, the performances, and even the cheesy cameos of literally (well, not literally, but a darn lot!) every Broadway star living,
The choreography used was nothing to laugh at, and for Garfield, who has never done a musical before, could not have been easy.
But he, along with the rest of the cast, performed some incredible dances and musical numbers.
Garfield’s singing voice also surprised, as he’s never shown off his vocal chops until this film.
The music in Tick Tick isn’t easy, and Garfield (along with the other leads, especially Vanessa Hudgens) handled it easily.
Vanessa Hudgens, who portrays a new character named Karessa, provides an insane amount of vocals for the entirety of the run time.
Hudgens and Garfield’s chemistry is terrific, and Hudgens doesn’t even play the love interest.
Their big duet, “Therapy,” may be one of the most challenging duets in the musical theatre canon, and their voices lend perfectly to the satire and seriousness in the lyrics.
Alexandra Shipp plays the love interest Susan and gives an incredibly emotional performance.
Although she only sings during one song (Come to Your Senses, a duet with Hudgens), she pulled at my heart throughout the entirety of the film.
Rounding out the cast are Robin De Jesus (from The Boys in the Band) as Larson’s roommate and friend Michael, Joshua Henry as Roger, Jonathan Marc Sherman as Ira, MJ Rodriguez (Pose) as Carolyn, Ben Levi Ross as Freddy, and featuring Judith Light as Rosa, and Bradley Whitford as Stephen Sondheim.
Robin De Jesús finally gets the meaty role he deserves and adds a lovely amount of comedy to the first half and a lot of emotional heartbreak in the latter half.
Judith Light may not have had too much screen time playing Rosa, Larson’s agent, but she significantly impacted.
Her acting prowess is nothing new, but she shines even during her short time on the screen.
Something that confused me a bit was the lack of Shipp singing in the film.
She sang in a chorus number and the duet with Hudgens, but Hudgens sang all the songs that represented the love interest.
During Come To Your Senses, her voice was so beautiful and pure that I would have enjoyed hearing more of her singing.
I sincerely enjoyed every performance, including every single person in the background. They had incredible voices and deserve to be recognized for their talent!
The choreography also deserves to be recognized, and it makes me wonder why there is no choreography category in the Oscars! There are plenty of musicals out this year (Dear Evan Hansen, Annette, Jamie) and plenty of choreographed parts in other films to make it worth it, but I digress.
The choreography is award-worthy, and I applaud choreographer Ryan Heffington for his work.
The other aspects of the production are fantastic, with incredible set design and dressing complimenting the unique early 90s costumes.
Steven Levenson (writer for Dear Evan Hansen and Fosse/Verdon) adapted the script for the film, and his usual finesse added greatly to the story.
The changes from the original musical to this movie are not lost on me, but unlike Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, the changes enhance the story and improve the overall presentation.
They still use the original bare-bones feeling of the show (which is what the original utilized). Still, the filmmakers included the actual scenes described instead of just telling the audience the story through the cabaret-style performance.
Showing instead of telling worked well for the adaptation, and I am glad they went in that direction.
The camera blocking involved with the choreography also makes for an exciting experience, and they do some incredible shots of the characters.
During the significant musical number with all of the cameos of Broadway stars, the outdoor set was very clearly a greenscreen.
There are very few issues with this film, it truly is a masterpiece, and everyone involved should be incredibly proud.
Depending on how the final musical of this year (West Side Story) turns out, this could be the best movie-musical of the year.
So Fanatics, will you be watching Lin-Manuel’s film directing debut?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
Tick, Tick… Boom! Releases in theatres November 12th and premieres on Netflix November 19th.