We don’t get many big cultural events in Oklahoma City that aren’t tied to tragedy or sports. Even those two forms of entertainment are inextricably intertwined, like love and marriage, horse and carriage, little boy blue, the man in the moon, etcetera.
Hamilton just opened at the Civic Center, and I would not have known about it if I didn’t work at the nearest bar to the venue. Perhaps I’m uncultured, I just don’t keep up with the local theater goings-on. But this one is a pretty big deal. It’s going to be playing for the next few weeks and they’ve sold a helluva lot of tickets.
Ya see, Hamilton is a musical about founding father Alexander Hamilton and other founding father-figures, but told through the art of RAP! I think, at least. All I know about it is what I’ve absorbed through internet-osmosis, and the few times when somebody played the soundtrack at a retail store that I worked for. What I can tell you is that crusty old white historical figures do rap battles that sound like they were programmed for a Kidz Bop CD.
It’s supposed to be a woke production with people of color playing the crusty old white historical figure, but I can’t tell you if it’s good or not. It just opened yesterday, I’ve only heard the Kidz Bop soundtrack, and the cheapest tickets I saw on the Civic Center website were nearly $100.
I spoke to a young stranger after last night’s performance, and she loved it, but brought up an important point: Everyone she saw at the show was old, wealthy white people, who probably missed the point and were just there to be seen. They did not have rap battles afterwards, so what’s the point?
The young stranger I spoke to also probably had old, wealthy white parents, otherwise how the hell did she get into Hamilton’s opening night? As someone without $100 to spend on a night out at the theater, or even $100 to spend in a medical emergency were it to happen, it’s tough to discuss this Broadway show that’s sweeping OKC. So instead, I’m now going to talk about Quentin Tarantino’s new film, Once Upon A Time… In Hollywood. You could pay for a matinee screening with couch change. Maybe it’s not as good, but there’s a big difference in having value meal money and fancy steak dinner money.
It’s not the most progressive film, especially when put next to Hamilton. I can’t remember any non-white people except for a guy who plays Bruce Lee getting beat up by Brad Pitt. In fact, it’s the least amount of people of color you’ve seen in a Tarantino movie since Reservoir Dogs. At least he doesn’t insert himself as a random character that insists on using the n-word this go-around.
But what the film lacks in diversity, it gives in incredible performances and production design. You get to see Pitt and DiCaprio cruise around a very believable old Los Angeles in classic cars, with massive neon signs burning beautifully into the expansive horizon. Not much really happens, but that’s not the point. You’re there to watch DiCaprio, Pitt, and Margot Robbie play characters in different stages of their careers in Tarantino’s love letter to old Hollywood.
I don’t like to give out spoilers, so I’ll keep the review as simple as that. But if anyone could let me know what happens at the end of Hamilton, that would be pretty sweet. I’m assuming it’s one of those 8 Mile rap battles but about taxation, who knows. Anyways, if you’ve got Hamilton tickets and wanna prove a point, I’m not hard to find, and I’ll sneak in a flask that we can share.