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'Phantom of the Opera' in a class of its own ...

Category: Phantom of the Opera Reviews
Article Date: January 5, 2005 | Publication: UK Newsquest Regional Press - This is Wirral | Author: Eric Munn

Posted by: admin

IT'S a risky business turning an incredibly successful epic stage musical into a film and the jury's still out on whether Madonna's portrayal of 'Evita' worked or not.

But following the success of 'Chicago' the cinematic version of Andrew Lloyd Webber's 'Phantom of the Opera' is in a class of its own.

The film set in Paris in 1870 and adapted from Gaston Leroux's 1911 novel will impress anyone who enjoyed the music of 'Phantom of the Opera'. First and foremost Phantom is a love story that is based upon a disfigured musical genius whose reign of terror at the Opera House reaches new heights when he falls in love with his young protege Christine Daae played by the beautiful Emmy Rossum.

Minnie Driver was outstanding in her part as dramatic diva Carlotta providing some light relief and great comedy moments.

The phantom portrayed brilliantly by Gerard Butler could have probably been a lot more gruesome - he was almost too handsome to be believable and far from repulsive. The original Phantom Michael Crawford would have been just perfect.

With her new 'posh voice' Liverpool lass Jennifer Ellison played the part of Christine's friend Meg extremely well. She's certainly come a long way since her days in Brookside Close.

However this is probably the type of film you'll either love or completely hate.

Director Joel Schumacher spared no expense in ensuring Phantom would be garishly perfect and after spending thousands of pounds on the lavish chandelier alone their one chance to record the scene where it crashes to the ground luckily paid off.

With hit songs such as 'Music of the Night' and 'Think of Me' I thoroughly enjoyed this powerful film although I've seen the stage version several times and I am very familiar with the musical score.

It's difficult to say whether it would be just as enjoyable for those who haven't seen (and fallen in love with) the stage musical.

'Phantom of the Opera' is currently showing at Warner Village Cinemas Conway Park Birkenhead.

Copyright 2005 NewsQuest Media Group Limited


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