Fifth about The Seventh

tick, tick… BOOM!

tick, tick… BOOM!: Lin-Manuel Miranda’s musical biopic of sorts nicely straddles the line between the melancholy that is natural to the story and the high energy of the musical. Many elements make this tale sad: his trajectory, his sense that time is running out, his circle of friends ravaged by AIDS. There are some interesting songs, and your mileage may vary, but the music, in general, is a tad sub-par. Andrew Garfield gives quite a performance as the young composer: he holds his own as he sings, and projects effectively all the emotional turmoil (his energy and hopefulness as well as his growing despair and sorrow); Alexandra Shipp is fine as the typical role of the alienated girlfriend; Robin de Jesús is heartbreaking as his best friend. The film’s best feature is its dynamic editing, by Myron Kerstein and Andrew Weisblum, which interweaves the play’s workshop, the dramatic storyline, and the other traditional musical numbers. The camera of cinematographer Alice Brooks moves a bit too much, particularly when Garfield is sitting at the piano, which is unneeded when the editing is so rich.

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