Dreamer or Businessman? "The Greatest Showman" Review

On December 28, The Greatest Showman premiered in Brazil. “Ladies and gentlemen, this is the moment you’ve been waiting for” is how Hugh Jackman invites us, in the first scene of the movie, to immerse ourselves in P.T. Barnum’s story. He was a showman very known as the creator of modern circus and someone that saw opportunity to make money with hoaxes.

His path appears in the movie with different – and beautiful – songs, designed for each part of his dream: to be who he is and to love the woman he first saw in his childhood. Between this lyrical story, Barnum (Hugh Jackman) meets Phillip (Zac Efron), a man from high society who can helps Barnum to get a new status. Here, the movie shows us not the dreamer, but the entrepreneur. This means that we see Barnum as a man who forgot everyone and is capable of hurting people’s feelings, because he thinks only about money and high society’s expectations of himself.

Image Source: IMDb

That’s the moment to Benj Pasek and Just Paul to shine, the creators of the movie’s soundtrack. They are responsible for the songs from another huge and successful musical, La La Land. And this makes a difference. “This Is Me” became the most recognizable song from The Greatest Showman not only because it’s part of the trailer, but also because of its beauty and meaning in the lyrics.

The Greatest Showman is a movie about love, dreams and hope. But also, about interests and life lessons. It’s the perfect fit to watch with your family or your favorite one; you will see exciting circus and dancing scenes and will admire every single one that is part of that place of performances. Not by how they look, but by who they are.

Image Source: IMDb

However, the way Barnum’s story was told put a doubt in our mind. Certainly, it’s a “positive vibe” movie, but… he was as entrepreneur. Was he really interested in getting to know those people he hired and tell society that they were human beings like all of us? Or did he take advantage of their “exotic forms” and nothing else? The movie answers us with a beautiful song in the end in which everyone seems to follow their dreams: a classic end to a movie that romanticizes a character’s life.

Anyway, it’s amazing to hear and watch Hugh Jackman (“The Greatest Show”), Rebecca Ferguson (“Never Enough”) and Keala Settle (“This Is Me”) in the same movie. You will leave the cinema theater with a smile in your face. Or with a question about how accurate Barnum’s story is.