Saturday, July 4, 2020

Hamilton Review: The Broadway Spectacle Is In Your Home Thanks To Disney+

Release date: July 3, 2020
Running time: 160 minutes
Starring:  Lin-Manuel Miranda, RenĂ©e Elise Goldsberry, Phillipa Soo, Leslie Odom Jr. 

Hamilton, the Broadway musical.  You have heard of it, you've probably listened to the soundtrack a thousand times, and maybe you've seen it in theaters once or twice or more.  For those that haven't seen it or heard about it, Hamilton is the Broadway re-imagining of the life of one of America's foremost founding fathers and first Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton.  The musical takes some liberties with his life and events, but does provide an entertaining show about his life and interactions with major historical figures.  The Disney+ version was filmed live on Broadway from the Richard Rodgers Theatre with the original Broadway cast.

There is a lot of magic in Hamilton.  The soundtrack is simply stellar.  The songs are catchy, have some hip-hop influences that should appeal to young and old listeners alike, and also seamlessly blend historical information with modern social issues.  The songs are so good that if you haven't listened to them before, you likely will include them on your playlist after your first viewing.  The historical setting is also magical, telling the story of one of America's founding fathers that probably doesn't get enough credit for what he did.  Most people probably only know him from high school history and the famous milk commercial.  However, he had a fascinating life and influence on America, and Hamilton puts all of that front and center while relating his life to current trends and social issues.  Lin-Manuel Miranda has deservedly received all the praise for this show but it goes without saying that this is one of the best Broadway shows ever made, that can now be seen whenever you want.

Additionally, this show provides a good avenue to learn about history or introduce it to your kids in an entertaining way. Although some liberties are taken, there is enough historical fact presented in this show to jump start any historical deep dive.  And Lin-Manuel Miranda's casting should be commended.  He made an effort to include a diverse cast in this show, highlighting that emotional, fantastic performances outweigh any sort of racially motivated historical accuracy.  And although I have seen this show on Broadway, seeing it on Disney+ provides a whole new level of enjoyment.  The live show lets you appreciate the spectacle and the performance, this Disney+ filming lets you appreciate the individual cast members.  I sometimes forget how much acting is required in Broadway, but seeing the close up shots gives you a perspective on how good these performers really are.  It is simply a treat to see and one that should not be missed.  

Hamilton on Disney+ gives the service its silver bullet in the duel with other streaming services.  One of best and most celebrated Broadway shows is now available to stream whenever you want.  Don't throw away your shot and stream it now. 

Watch it.

No comments:

Post a Comment