Arts & Entertainment

Lin Manuel Miranda’s “Tick, Tick…BOOM!” reimagines the life of Jonathan Larson

“tick, tick…BOOM!” is a stunning musical no one should miss.

Set as a semi-autobiographical musical about Jonathan Larson – the man who redefined musicals with his work “Rent,” “Tick, Tick…BOOM!” directed by Lin Manuel Miranda is a stunning and musically beautiful movie that reimagines the life of Larson before he made it big in theater.

The movie “tick, tick…BOOM!” is a great reimagination of the life Jonathan Larson led while aspiring to become a musical playwright. It shows the struggles and hardships he went through, the relationships that had been affected by his journey and includes 13 of his wonderful pieces of music.

Larson’s girlfriend is offered a job in another city, his friend is going up in the world, all the while Larson is still working as a waiter, waiting for his big break. The movie takes place as a storytelling of his life in the midst of a theatrical performance. Set in the year 1990, Larson has spent the past eight years of his life constructing his first musical titled “Superbia” – the musical we see in the story being told by Larson. After getting a chance to finally show off his work in a workshop aimed to show friends and possible investors – Larson decides that it is finally his time to achieve his dream of being a musical playwright. He focuses on the production of his workshop the whole week prior to the show time, but this is where complications arise.

After the work Larson has put into his first musical, things don’t go the way he plans. This changes his perspective on what he has been doing for the past eight years. To add insult to injury, he further receives more negative news in his life regarding those he holds important to him. This puts Larson in a tough situation when he decides on his future, but not all is bad when he learns that there is someone out there willing to give him a shoulder to lean on.

The musical does a great job in not having the music be the main focus but rather have it enhance the storytelling. Songs break at times where you would expect them – but one thing that “tick, tick…BOOM!” does well is include important dialogue/scenes in the middle of the music. This might be because Larson is someone who is able to make music about anything, so the music may have come from the real life situations that pair within the musical.

Overall, the movie “tick, tick…BOOM!” is great for both people who knew of Jonathan Larson’s works beforehand and to people who have never heard of him at all. This movie has a great cast from Andrew Garfield to Vanessa Hudgens to Alexandra Shipp. If you have not watched it yet and are even the slightest bit interested, “tick, tick…BOOM!” is one musical you should not miss.

Title: “Tick, Tick…BOOM!”

Star Rating: 4/5

[Available only on Netflix]