RATINGS: A = must own B = buy it C= average D = yawn F = puke

Freddie Mercury – The Great Pretender (Blu-Ray)
Eagle Rock Entertainment


Rating: C

This documentary takes a very in-depth look into the career of Freddie Mercury outside of the band Queen. Produced and directed by life-long Queen fan Rhys Thomas, the movie features a ton of archive footage going clear back to 1976.

Mercury fans, more than Queen fans will enjoy this work as it really focuses on life outside of the band. The best parts are the interview footage from back in the day. Queen fans, at least the manly ones, will be uncomfortable watching Mercury dance with a stage full of shirtless dancers and will cringe when hearing the unreleased music with Michael Jackson. Much of the documentary features Mercury’s collaboration with soprano Montserrat Caallé.

Mercury was much more open-minded in his personal and professional life than the fans of Queen who loved the band’s earlier hard rocking music. This will put off some of the fan base.

The documentary is interesting to a point but, as this focuses solely on Freddie, rock fans will fail to see the music he chose to sing, as well as the theatrics he brought to his solo career worthwhile. Suffice it to say outside of Queen Freddie does not rock.

The positive side of the film is the up close and personal comments from managers, friends and former band mates. That part of the show is highly interesting and shows Mercury much less outgoing and flamboyant than his on stage persona would have one believe.

For Mercury’s large fan base this documentary will be a must-own as it is one of the most in-depth looks his life. Fans of the hard rock side of Queen will be less enamored.

By Jeb Wright