RENT (D: Chris Columbus,135 min)
When Jonathan Larson 's pop rock 'n' gospel reworking of La Bohème hit Toronto in the late 1990s, it already seemed dated. So what are we to make of the big-screen version?
Most of the original Broadway cast has reassembled to play a group of East Village boho artists and wannabes, with one exception. In the key role of Mimi Marquez is Rosario Dawson, whose previous onscreen singing experience was being one of Josie's Pussycats.
The musical's fanatical following - they call themselves Rentheads - should ensure a strong opening weekend during the U.S.'s Thanksgiving holidays. But the big question is whether Chris Columbus (Mrs. Doubtfire, the first two Harry Potter films) can handle this material. Film opens Wednesday (November 23). Screened after press time - see review online November 23 at www.nowtoronto.com/film and full review in next week's issue.