The Phantom of the Opera

Director Joel Schumacher is the only one who brings some razzle-dazzle to Andrew Lloyd Webber’s well-known operetta, with the ho-hum performances, dirge-filled soundtrack and clichéd plot of a tortured love triangle. The titular Phantom (Gerard Butler) no longer is the grotesque and feared monster like Lon Chaney’s 1925 version, but a young stud with chiseled features and a stylized porcelain mask. Regardless of this unfortunate deviation, the Phantom still lurks in the dark catacombs beneath the Opera House where he tutors a beautiful opera singer (Emmy Rossum). Soon, the rising star’s former boyfriend (Patrick Wilson) returns with his boring and uncharismatic personality so that jealousy inevitably can ensue with laborious dialogue and depressing songs. However, the director’s visually appealing translation of this overly recycled tale stimulates viewers with the sensational sets, costume and art direction. This, thankfully, will help viewers endure this 143-minute musical.

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