I first watched Rent, the Movie. Then I went to see a touring stage production and now I've watched this dvd of the final Broadway show. This is a wonderful, emotional, superior production of a show that is moving and stimulating.
I see by the one other review, that he didn't like it. I don't understand why.
The show is what the show is - and that says a lot - inspiring, energetic and emotional. It is a wonderful piece. This dvd's production is unique in that I've never seen a filmed stage production done like this before - and I'm very impressed! A far superior visual than I've seen done before! And the audio is excellent! The bonus features are also very well done, and draw on the emotions after having just watched the show. This almost rivals being there!
Altogether, this is a fabulous dvd to own, and to re:watch over and over again. I'm so glad that I've added this experience to my history of "Rent". Do yourself a favour - get a copy.
This raw energy musical creates an emotional whallop, as it's final performance is filmed live. The contemporary songs and sometimes opera-style music are great (yes, expect some singing dialogue). It is as anticipated, well-cast with near-perfect performances and vocals. Though Rent didn't start a trend with Broadway musicals as originally predicted, it remains a unique stand-alone stage musical phenomenon, representing an era of awareness, with its message of acceptance and love. I originally liked the movie and didn't understand the less than enthusiastic reviews, until I got this dvd. Wow, nothing compares. Highly recommended for anyone who missed seeing this original and inventive musical live on Broadway.
on February 25, 2009
If you are a fan of Jonathan Larson's smash hit musical, then this is something you'll definitely want to own. However, for the sake of contrast, I will provide a brief, critical break down. Rent is not a dramatically integrated musical, and I was perplexed to learn that it fetched the Pulitzer for drama. It addresses social issues, yes, but from the "drama" perspective, it's neither especially well-written or well-organized. There are far too many characters, and a lot of the scenes are more like Look-At-What-I-Can-Get-Away-With-Saying-On-Stage stunts than thematic contributions.
As a musical, Rent feels a little chaotic and static, owing to a weak plot and characters with ho-hum conflicts and desires. The lyrics are very bland. I'm not asking for Hammerstein's poeticness or Sondheim's eloquence, but there are far too many kitchy lines i.e. "Like a sunset" and "I can see it in your eyes"--lines that are repeated hundreds of times in songs and shows, and that have become annoying and empty in meaning--
Thus, the show hypocritically falls victim to the cliche, mainstream conformity that its popular number "La Vie Boheme" so blatantly bashes. But although serious music and theatre people will see this musical as a bastardization of Puccini's masterpiece, it has done a good job of making known to younger audiences the profundity of that classic opera--which I highly recommend seeing.
But to its great credit, Rent has caught a fevor amongst modern theatregoers, and it never fails for pure, sing-along-able entertainment!