Hamilton (2020)

Robert Crawford

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Peg and I watched the entire thing last night.

So as not to disappoint Mr. Manuel-Miranda--and not be perceived as a thread-crapper--I will simply say we didn't care for it. At all.

One positive thing I will say is that the production was well recorded. The quality (PQ and SQ) was terrific. And I thought the direction of the production was spot-on in terms of maintaining a theater-like quality with the addition of multiple camera angles and close-ups. If only more Broadway productions had this same type of preservation.
I would've been surprise if you didn't feel that way about it.
 
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Malcolm R

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Plus, you'd already indicated your dislike of the "Hamilton" music/soundtrack in the Mary Poppins Returns thread. I'm surprised you even watched "Hamilton", already knowing that you did not like the music:
The subject of the founding fathers never fails to entrance me. Put it in front of me and I will devour it. And I love musicals. But I can't abide Hamilton. Like you, Chris, I've tried and tried. It's a total fail for me.
All of it (not an easy experience for me). From my perspective, a clear majority of Hamilton is rap and there was maybe only one or two songs (out of dozens) that I didn't hate. But that's just me. I'm all for people liking Hamilton and being introduced to the stories of the amazing men who founded this nation. I've got other ways to hear those stories.
 
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TJPC

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We had really good seats lined up for the road show production in Toronto before the zombie apocalypse. This of course was cancelled. Mirvish productions has held our money and promised equivalent seats when things return to normal (ha!), or we can request a refund at any time.

I made a deal with my wife. If the film of the broadway production is released on disc (we don’t have access to Disney+) and we buy it, we will get our money back and forget about the live show. She also agreed to watch it with me.

I wonder what the chances are of a Blu ray.
 

Johnny Angell

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I am not a fan of rap either. I plan on printing out the Hamilton lyrics so that I can know them ahead of time. Even in a traditional musical I often have trouble following the lyrics. We’ll be watching Hamilton this coming week.
 

DaveF

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We watched last night. Not my personal favorite show. But, amazing, a work of genius.

The energy of a live audience is missing, but it’s made up for by having seats better than you could get in a real theater. This was $3000 show tix for $7/mo streaming sub.

And oh but for this video production to be done for all musicals? How much would I love to rewatch Come From Away like that?!?!
 

Jake Lipson

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f only more Broadway productions had this same type of preservation.
As I'm sure you know, there are complicated legal and contractual things with regards to the various unions that prevent this from being done more regularly. However, I think the pandemic might actually help this happen more often in the future.

Many Broadway producers seem to feel that having the material available in another medium, like a taping, is counterproductive because they want their work to remain exclusively in the live theatre space. I've read articles before (none recently, so I can't cite them) where people think that providing a taping would cannibalize ticket sales. I don't agree with that, but I understand why other people think it.

Then the pandemic came along and completely cut off the revenue stream for live theatre. No one in the industry ever thought that could happen, so they never thought it would go away. The film of Hamilton, which sold to Disney for $75 million, is a new revenue stream for that show. Now, I'm not saying that all Broadway shows would sell for that amount of money -- far from it -- but the excitement around the release of the film does demonstrate that it's possible for Broadway shows to make money in other ways. And that might well open some people's eyes.

I want to be clear here: The pandemic is a terrible thing, and I wish it wasn't happening, and that the world was healthy. If that were the case, none of us would be writing these posts right now because Hamilton would still be in Disney's vault until October 2021. But I bet one of the things that the pandemic has done is make Broadway producers really wish that they had additional revenue streams. So it wouldn't surprise me if, once live theatre is able to come back from this mess, conversations happen that lead to more films of this type being able to happen. Because you really never know when a revenue stream like that will be needed.

How much would I love to rewatch Come From Away like that?!?!
As an aside, an actual movie (not live taping) of Come From Away is in development with director Christopher Ashley, who also did the stage version, returning to the helm. Of course, there are no dates or anything, but it's in the works. I hope, with that one, they might be able to actually film it in Gander, which would be a terrific asset for that story. In the meantime, you might like Memphis, which was also directed by Ashley onstage and got a great live taping with its original cast.

Amazon product
 
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Mike Frezon

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It is correct that I had posted I did not like the selections of Hamilton that I had heard from the cast CD and seen performed on various variety shows and webcasts.

But I figured with the critical acclaim this show had received it might very well be possible that seeing the production along with hearing the music might create a different feeling about the work.

It didn't.

I tried to find a way to engage closed-captioning for the stream but couldn't figure it out (if it was possible at all). It might have helped me and Peg to understand story development if we could have better understood the lyrics.
 

Jake Lipson

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I tried to find a way to engage closed-captioning for the stream but couldn't figure it out (if it was possible at all). It might have helped me and Peg to understand story development if we could have better understood the lyrics.
I believe that English closed captioning is available -- Miranda tweeted that it would be -- but I didn't need them so couldn't tell you how to turn them on.

I will say that when my mom and I saw it live, she requested to listen to the cast recording in advance in order to familiarize herself with the material because there are a lot of words and it goes by very fast. So while it surprises me that you couldn't understand the lyrics, it doesn't surprise me that you weren't accustomed to the speed with which they were coming at the audience.

That being said, if you didn't care for it at all, I doubt that reexamining the lyrics at this point would change your opinion.
 

Malcolm R

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Not familiar with D+, but Netflix has a section for audio and subtitles when playing back similar to setup on physical discs.

A search at the D+ web site says:

To turn on subtitles while playing content, please follow these steps:
  1. From within the video player, select the keyboard icon in the upper right-hand corner of your screen
  2. Select your preferred language for subtitles.
 

Mike Frezon

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Speed (of lyric delivery) may have played a part in it, but diction was also a problem. Within this production, every word from Leslie Odom was perfectly easy to understand while other cast mates not-so-much.

CC is available. Friends use it in their viewing.
Bummer. I was using an Apple 4kTV an couldn't figure out how to turn them on (either by using the device menu or through the Disney+ app).
 

Josh Steinberg

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On the Apple TV, when the program is playing, swipe down on the remote - it should pull up a drop down menu with several options at the heading (Info, Audio, Subtitles). Then just maneuver over to the Subtitles heading, click that and it’ll show you the options.
 

Mark-P

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I was waiting on pins and needles to learn if the Frezon household was going to be won over. I’m disappointed that they weren’t. I guess it was just a bridge too far. :(
 

DaveF

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Odd. I thought their diction was impeccable and didn't have any trouble understanding any of it.
Your ears aren't as experienced and wise as Mike's, which can make a difference in following fast-paced dialogue. :)

There might also be familiarity with the form.

I struggled a bit at times, especially in the beginning, with following along. The first half had a breakneck pace, I almost felt like I was out of breath just from listening!
 

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