In the carnivalesque musical biographical film ‘Tick, Tick… Boom!,’ Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright-director Lin-Manuel Miranda gives a sensitive look into the life of another Pulitzer Prize-winning artist, Jonathan Larson. The film covers the artist’s life as he navigates through love, mortality, career, and creation, and is based on Larson’s semi-autobiographical Broadway musical rock monologue of the same name.
As the quirky artist, Andrew Garfield gives a swaying lead performance, while a star-studded cast ensemble provides him with company in diverse parts. We have some suggestions if you’re looking for similar visual masterpieces that blur the limits between theatre and cinema or just want to get your creative juices flowing. The majority of these films related to ‘Tick, Tick… Boom!’ are available on Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime.
Lars von Trier, a founding member of Dogme-95, h as remained a fairly enigmatic director throughout his time. The experimental drama ‘Dogville’ demonstrates the Danish director’s talent once again, as he is recognized for pushing and subverting his artistic boundaries. The story takes place entirely on a barren studio, which gives it a dramatic feel.
Grace, a strange woman, seeks refuge in the titular town, ostensibly to avoid a gang of criminals. The residents of the village are delighted to accommodate her, but as the story unfolds, they show their true colors in tooth and claw. Finally, a smart twist ending accomplishes its goal by deeply unsettling the viewer. Nicole Kidman impresses in the harrowing part of the abject, and the film’s minimalist approach eliminates movement while amplifying the tragedy. ‘Tick, Tick… Boom!’ comes next. ‘You might be interested in seeing another example of a seamless fusion of theatrical and cinematic styles.’ If that’s the case, this slow-burning film will keep you up at night.
High School Musical (2006)
‘High School Musical,’ written by Peter Barsocchini and directed by Kenny Ortega, is a musical high school romance comedy that is sure to transport you back to the golden age of live-action Disney. The plot centres around two polar opposite high school students who decide to participate in the school’s annual musical drama, which may or may not be a loose adaptation of ‘Romeo and Juliet.’
They pose challenges to the school’s established elites with their singing abilities flowing from every inch of their bodies. Vanessa Hudgens gives an outstanding performance in the lead duet with Zac Efron. If Hudgens’ performance in ‘Tick, Tick… Boom!’ has piqued your interest, you should see her early career vehicle.
In The Heights (2021)
In the musical dramedy ‘In The Heights,’ director Jon M. Chu adapts Quiara Alegra Hudes and Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Grammy Award-winning Broadway musical. The pastiche plot unfolds in Upper Manhattan’s Washington Heights neighborhood, celebrating the lives of the neighborhood’s Hispanic and Latino culture.
The jazzy and adventurous musical unfolds like a sequence of fever dreams on a sunny day, with a colorful and energetic bodega at its heart. Lin-Manuel Miranda’s directorial debut is ‘Tick, Tick… Boom!,’ and if you want to hear more from him, ‘In The Heights’ will be music to your ears, literally.
Les Misérables (2012)
‘Les Misérables,’ directed by Tom Hooper, is an epic historical musical drama film version of Victor Hugo’s classic novel. The framework and lyrics of the film are based on Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg’s French musical adaption. The plot revolves around parole breaker Jean Valjean, who unwittingly takes in a factory worker’s daughter while being hunted by cruel policeman Javert in a politically tumultuous France.
If that isn’t enough to pique your attention, consider the star-studded cast, which includes Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, Amanda Seyfried, and Helena Bonham Carter. If the production value of ‘Tick, Tick… Boom!’ has made you realize how tough it is to produce a musical, this enormous timepiece will astound you.
Sita Sings The Blues (2008)
In the animated romance comedy-drama movie musical ‘Sita Sings The Blues,’ director Nina Paley gives the old tale a bluesy update. The plot follows Sita in exile and is loosely based on the Hindu classic ‘Ramayana.’ Sita is an ancient deity who is also a modern-day lady struggling with her cosmopolitan living in Seattle.
The retelling has every chance of enthralling spectators, thanks to a catchy tune, a witty storyline, a variety of animation styles, and a particular feminist charm. If you’re seeking for a couple more wacky and experimental musicals to follow up on ‘Tick, Tick… Boom!,’ this film could be just what you’re looking for.
Synecdoche, New York (2008)
Art becomes more than a way of life for the artist; it becomes an obsession. Writer-director Charlie Kaufman’s directorial debut, ‘Synecdoche, New York,’ is a mind-bending psychological drama picture. Caden Cotard (Philip Seymour Hoffman sways in the role with his ubiquitous charisma) is a visionary theatre director who will go to any limit to create the greatest epic theatrical masterpiece. Despite this, he is becoming increasingly isolated in his personal life.
Cotard receives a substantial grant and sets out to produce a theatrical masterwork that reflects his life and the city in which he lives. His vision becomes a fantasy, and his reality begins to spin out of control. If ‘Tick, Tick… Boom!’ makes you think about the difficulties of the creative process, this postmodern imitation will hammer home the point.
The Science of Sleep (2006)
‘The Science of Sleep,’ directed by French director Michel Gondry, is known for his particular storytelling style and visual approach, which is highlighted even more in his third picture. The protagonist of this fantasy comedy is a young man who seeks relief from the perplexity of life in his lucid dream world.
He meets a lovely neighbor and falls in love with her, but his courtship is jeopardized by thrilling fantasies. Set design is important in this film, much as it is in ‘Tick, Tick… Boom!’ If you enjoyed the way ‘Tick, Tick… Boom!’ deals with the intertwined concepts of reality and fantasy, you should add this film to your bucket list.
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