Hamilton on the Wrong Side of Cinema

Lin-Manuel Miranda from Hamilton performs during the Tony Awards in New York City in 2016. (Lucas Jackson/Reuters)
A monument to political egotism self-destructs.

NRPLUS MEMBER ARTICLE D isney’s presentation of the Broadway blockbuster Hamilton marks a curious cultural turning point: The most heralded production in recent Broadway history has not been adapted into a movie — it’s a digital video recording of a 2016 stage performance — because it has to live up to its hype as an exclusive Broadway event. Hamilton’s celebration by elite media cadres contradicts the essence of cinema as an emotionally intense, unifying popular art form. This version happens at, literally, an emotional and intellectual distance.

Lin-Manuel Miranda conceived a treatment of the life of Alexander Hamilton, one of the Founding Fathers and the

Armond White, a culture critic, writes about movies for National Review and is the author of New Position: The Prince Chronicles. His new book, Make Spielberg Great Again: The Steven Spielberg Chronicles, is available at Amazon.

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