How The Greatest Showman Won Me Over To Musicals

The Greatest Showman Review By Deffinition

I’ll start this review by saying that I absolutely HATE musicals. Bar 8 mile (sort of a musical I suppose) I find them corny, wrote and seriously lacking in character development. Naturally, when my girlfriend informed me that she wanted to go and see The Greatest Showman, I dragged my heels. For weeks and weeks, I came up with all manner of excuses as to why I couldn’t go and see the film. Whether it was its mixed reviews, January release or price I put forward a reason as to why we couldn’t go. Eventually, I gave in because I felt guilty that I’d forced her to see over 12 Superhero films last year (women’s rights and all that) and Hugh Jackman has in my eyes never really put in a less than stellar performance.

As the film started and chants broke out I thought ‘oh here we go,’ however within the first ten minutes the movie completely swept me off my feet. Sure there was the usual over the top dancing and singing through the dialogue that I detested in the genre, but beneath the surface, there was something childlike, a promise of a better tomorrow for all no matter our colour or creed.

The Greatest Showman Review

The Greatest Showman Is The Greatest Musical I’ve Ever Seen


Throughout the movie I became enamored with its songs, being brought almost to the brink of tears by the absolutely outstanding ‘Never Enough’ at the film’s midsection.

Handling a wealth of subjects such as race, the class divide, and deformity, the movie has a lot on its plate. To its credit though it never feels out of its depth and every theme is handled with a wealth of sincerity.

As always Hugh Jackman puts his all into the film and it’s hard not to be taken by his charisma and talent. The man simply loves what he is doing and is very, VERY good at it. He’s aided by a phenomenal supporting cast and every character has their arc that strengthens them throughout.

Not the real PT Barnum


I’ve seen many criticisms that the portrayal of PT Barnum is a little whitewashed. Missing most of his manner it Disneyfies him and paints him as a loveable rogue. Whilst some dislike this I actually think it ties in beautifully with the movies overarching motif. The Circus May have had its darker side but when the lights were on that was all put to the side in favor of selling us a dream.

That’s what The Greatest Showman does, it presents an ideal and shys away from the dark history that enveloped Barnum. It’s the perfect summation of its majestic appeal and aids the movie metaphorically in several ways.

The Verdict


If like me you dislike musicals then try to put your prejudices to one side and enjoy this film for what it is. Pure escapism. Much like the real Barnum, you will leave your troubles at the door and forget about Life for a while.

Magic from start to finish, I give The Greatest Showman a…

9/10

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