Tick Tick Boom

I’m not gonna bother to check the correct punctuation on that title.

Skipping ahead of a couple of movies that will get quick posts later because this one left me with some thoughts. Or really, more just experiential anecdotes that I can easily fill a post with.

I was in NYC this past weekend, seeing the BFFF for the first time in (according to Google) 845 days. Really, all I wanted to do was hang with the bestie. The only show I bought tix for was Moulin Rouge. Otherwise, the weekend was pretty open. A few weeks ago, I saw Lin-Manuel Miranda tweet that the marquee at the Paris theater had been updated to include his directorial debut Tick Tick Boom. A movie musical with a very limited theatrical run at an iconic NYC theater that I would love to check out and the opportunity to watch it with my even more of a theatre geek best friend? Yes please. So I jumped on those tix as soon as they went on sale.

It ended up being the perfect end to a wonderful weekend. After Moulin Rouge, we sang showtunes while knocking back G&T’s at NYC institution Marie’s Crisis. Saturday we walked thru all five floors of Moma in between other bits of running around the city. So by Sunday, a nice brunch at a diner and a chill movie was just what the doctor ordered.

Oh and a quick word on the Paris theater. It’s an old classic, single auditorium theater in NYC (I believe the last single auditorium standing, but I’m too lazy to confirm). Recently Netflix entered in an agreement with them to help keep the theater open that will give them a steady venue to exhibit their films. We might be getting something similar in LA with the Egyptian.

Right so Tick Tick Boom is by and about Jonathan Larson, the man who wrote the musical phenomenon RENT. Originally a three person stage musical, the story follows his attempt to get his first musical produced and the affects it has on him and his relationships. In other words, it’s basically a musical for people who love musicals. And this movie was produced by people who love musicals. It all shows through beautifully. There’s also some of the best Broadway Easter eggs sprinkled throughout the film if you know to look for them, or I should say if you know who to look for.

I knew even less about the musical going in than what I wrote in that previous paragraph (of course I know Rent well). I absolutely loved every frame of it. The music was gorgeous (which I downloaded at 1 AM the next morning when I was home in LA and getting a jump on some Black Friday sales before going to bed). Perfect casting. I loved Andrew Garfield, and thought his voice sounded so great. The bestie pointed out that Larson wasn’t really much of a singer so it made sense to have a lead who also wasn’t a formally trained singer. Happy to see original American Idiot Favorite Son Joshua Henry in the film, as well as Vanessa Hudgens who has been really working her way up in the musical space.

I could not have chosen a more perfect venue for this film. The Paris is not too far from the Broadway theaters the characters are aspiring towards, so of course the auditorium was filled with theater people. There were countless moments were applause broke out, making this much more magical than it would have been watching on Netflix (though I may likely rewatch it there soon). Towards the end of the film (I initially typed “show”) there was a gorgeous song about friendship. The bestie put his arm around me and pulled me close saying there wasn’t anyone else he would have wanted to see this with. The room got awful dusty. I wouldn’t have traded this weekend for anything.

Tick Tick Boom – \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/