Rami Malek wins rave reviews for Mercury biopic

Brian May, Rami Malek and Roger Taylor. (AFP)
Updated 24 October 2018

Rami Malek wins rave reviews for Mercury biopic

LONDON: The Freddie Mercury biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody” premiered in London in grand style on Tuesday, reflecting the enduring appeal of Queen and their legendary frontman 27 years on from his death.

Fans watched the film in the 12,500-capacity Wembley Arena — opposite the stadium where the iconic British rock band gave a famous performance at the 1985 Live Aid concert.

Among the world’s best-selling artists ever, most of the band’s sales have come since the singer’s passing at the age of 45.

And Queen guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor, now 71 and 69, are still rocking arenas worldwide, resurgent as a live act propelled by the flamboyant US vocalist Adam Lambert.

In the pipeline for eight years, the film could deliver another smash hit, with Egyptian-American actor Rami Malek winning rave reviews for his performance as Mercury.

Malek has talked about tackling a complex character — a publicly bombastic yet privately shy individual with a highly unusual path to stardom.

“Freddie Mercury is synonymous with being otherworldly,” the actor said on the red carpet.

“He was a revolutionary.”


Highlights from the Najd Collection set to auction at Sotheby’s

Forty works from Najd Collection will be auctioned at Sotheby’s on October 22. (Courtesy: Sotheby’s)
Updated 41 min 34 sec ago

Highlights from the Najd Collection set to auction at Sotheby’s

Here are some highlights from the Najd Collection, from which 40 works will be auctioned at Sotheby’s on October 22. 

Osman Hamdy Bey

Sotheby’s bills the Najd Collection as “one of the greatest collections of Orientalist paintings ever assembled.” Before the auction, all 155 works will be travelling to New York, LA, Dubai and Paris for public viewing, including Bey’s “Koranic Instruction,” seen here.

Eugène Fromentin

Fromentin’s dramatic 1864 oil painting,“Windstorm on the Esparto Plains of the Sahara” — in which a storm menaces a group of horsemen with no shelter in sight — is expected to sell for between $490,000-$730,000. Fromentin was a French painter and writer best-known for his works featuring the land and people of Algeria. 

Jean-Joseph Benjamin-Constant

“The King of Morocco Leaving to Receive a European Ambassador” is typical of the French painter and etcher’s work. Benjamin-Constant was well-known in his day (he received a state funeral in France in 1902), but has largely been forgotten since, perhaps because his work was so traditional.