Experience the original broadway production.
Hamilton is a 2020 historical musical film directed by Thomas Kail, written by Lin Manuel-Miranda, produced by Walt Disney Pictures, 5000 Broadway Productions, Nevis Productions, Old 320 Sycamore Pictures, and RadicalMedia, and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. The film is based on Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow, which, in turn, is based on the life of Alexander Hamilton. It stars Lin Manuel-Miranda and Leslie Odom, Jr.. It was not nominated for any Academy Awards.
"Immigrants. We get the job done." -Alexander Hamilton and Marquis de Lafayette
Alexander Hamilton arrives in America and immediately takes the opportunity to go to college and fight in the Revolutionary War alongside his friends and enemies. As his life goes on, tragedy and dark secrets loom over his political career. The stage lights up to tell the life of the first treasurer and Founding Father of the United States of America.
The first thing that I have to say about this is just the overall vibe of the show. It is such an experience to watch Hamilton, even if you're at home watching it on your TV. It is much more immersive when you are there, but it still is the same fun, hype musical that took the world by storm when it hit Broadway. It's hard to dislike the show, even if you don't like the story or the acting. The music is one of a kind, and it is great to see it just light up on the big screen.
Most of the acting is amazing. David Diggs is the best, by far. He is so charismatic and likable as both Lafayette and Jefferson. He is super funny, and feels like he modernizes the show. Leslie Odom, Jr. is good. He isn't fantastic, but he feels like the Aaron Burr that is supposed to be. Phillipa Soo is great. She is very kind and loving towards the other characters and feels like a mother-like character. Renée Elise Goldberry probably has the best voice out of all the actors and actresses. "Satisfied" is one of the highlights of the show, and she is the reason that that is the case. Anthony Ramos is very good in both of his parts. I liked him better as Philip Hamilton, because he feels childish. Christopher Jackson feels like a leader and patriarch as Washington, and he definitely fits the role. Finally, Okieriete Onaodowan is also perfect in both of his roles. They are actually very different, and he does a great job of playing the crazy, eccentric Hercules Mulligan and then the proper, formal James Madison in the second act.
Oh, yeah, and Jonathan Groff is the funniest part in the show. King George III has some parts that can make you fall over, laughing hysterically. He doesn't really have to act that much, as he is pretty much just singing the lines that are pretty funny themselves, but he does add an extra touch that really makes you crack up.
Hamilton is not really anything without its music. This has some of the greatest Broadway showtunes ever. Between "Alexander Hamilton, "My Shot", "The Schuyler Sisters", "Right Hand Man", "You'll Be Back", "Satisfied", "Guns and Ships", "Yorktown", and "Non-Stop", it is hard to really pick the best. And those are half of the songs...in the first act. Hamilton became a cultural phenomenon because of its music, and it really is amazing to see it all live.
The choreography is so sophisticated and great. It is hard to keep up with some of the dancing. It is an amazing and beautiful sight to watch the ensemble and cast do these things that the human body should not be able to do at the speed and consistency that they do it at.
The show is actually surprisingly funny. Most of the one-liners and quips come from either Jefferson or King George, but there are still a lot of them. They really make the audience laugh a lot, and that just shows how much fun this is to watch.
I love how Hamilton modernizes these people that were living three hundred years ago. They make Hamilton and Burr and Washington and Jefferson say things that make sense now, but wouldn't way back then. It is so interesting to see them in a modern world, but still living the historical lives that they did live.
When it comes to plot and story and stuff like that...I mean, it's fine, I guess. That is really kind of sidelined in this. You aren't paying attention to the bigger picture. You're living in the moment. But the plot is pretty much just the life of Alexander Hamilton. It's not bad, but it isn't really that important.
I think that they shoot the show in a good way. Some of the shots are really cool, but I liked that you got to see the facial expressions of the actors, giving the show more life than it has when you are sitting in the nosebleeds watching it.
It pains me to say this, but I think that the biggest problem with Hamilton is Lin Manuel-Miranda's performance. I love Lin Manuel-Miranda and I think he's a great person that crafted this amazing show, but I do not think that he is very good as Alexander Hamilton. Like I said, it is shot in a way that all of the facial expressions are visible, and some of his facial expressions look incredibly weird. He is overly dramatic and feels out of place with the rest of show. He seems like he's on a different wavelength than the rest of the actors and actresses.
I think that this is a hard movie to grade, because it isn't really a movie. It is one of the best Broadway shows of all time, even in the four or five years it's been on Broadway, and it is an enjoyable watch. But if you want to watch a good movie, then you won't want to watch this.
The other thing is that it is really long. And there's almost no talking. It can be very slow at some points. If there's a stretch of bad songs, then the entertainment quality just dips. It makes the show boring at certain points, so you need to have patience if you want to enjoy this film.
Despite a bad lead and some boring points, Hamilton is truly great overall and delivers mostly everything that the audience wants.
I will give it a Savory rating. Age range is 11+.
SWEET N' SOUR SCALE
Sour (Bad) Moldy (Terrible)
Fun Factor: 7/10
Directed by Thomas Kail
Released on July 3, 2020
Rated PG-13 for language, sexual content, disturbing themes
2 hours and 40 minutes
Lin Manuel-Miranda as Alexander Hamilton
Leslie Odom, Jr. as Aaron Burr
Philippa Soo as Elizabeth Schuyler-Hamilton
Daveed Diggs as Marquis de Lafayette/Thomas Jefferson
Renée Elise Goldberry as Angelica Schuyler Anthony Ramos as John Laurens/Philip Hamilton
Christopher Jackson as George Washington
Okieriete Onaodowan as Hercules Mulligan/James Madison
Jonathan Groff as King George III
Jasmine Cephas-Jones as Peggy Schuyler/Maria Reynolds