miércoles, 7 de septiembre de 2016
NEW FILM REVIEW : 'Eight Days a Week,' new Beatles doc rocks
Film review: 'Eight Days a Week,' new Beatles doc rocks
September 6, 2016
"Eight Days a Week," the story of the Beatles' touring years, gets one show Sept. 15 at the Fine Arts Theatre.
(Photo: Apple Corps Ltd./File)
Beatles fans will cheer the new documentary "Eight Days a Week: The Touring Years," which follows the band's time on the road, a period of joy and near insanity as they changed nearly everything about music in the 1960s.
Director Ron Howard has assembled a magical mystery tour of Beatles interviews, concert footage, stories and more. It really covers the band's rocket shot to fame, starting in 1962 and basically ending around 1966, when fed up with their out-of-control popularity, they gave up concerts, retreating to the studio where some of their best music was made.
Even the most-versed fans will be stunned by the vintage film clips and band insight. Fresh interviews with Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, plus past commentary from the late John Lennon and George Harrison, give great knowledge on the band's workings. It's not really a concert film, but there is a lot of Beatles music.
The film doesn't dish any dirt on the Fab Four beyond the "bigger than Christ" controversy and a reported snub of the first family of the Philippines. There is no mention of original drummer Pete Best, pushed out just before the band's meteoric rise to fame, or of other personal blemishes.
"Eight Days a Week" is getting an odd release, with a Sept.15 debut, a one-week run and going over to the Hulu streaming after that. It seems likely that it will eventually get a Blu-ray/DVD release and might be a huge seller for the holiday season.
The story starts in England where, by 1963, the Beatles were already huge but had yet to invade America. There are flashbacks to the band's earliest days at the Cavern Club in Hamburg, Germany, where the four scruffy musicians were working like dogs. It took a number of elements, not the least being manager Brian Epstein, to clean the band up and unleash the polished version on the music world.
The 1964 first trip to the States includes the required "Ed Sullivan Show" footage, but that's the tip of the iceberg. Howard has gathered clips from many other lesser concerts and the story is played out against the unrest that engulfed the nation in the 1960s. Howard has added interviews with early fans who eventually became celebrities themselves: Elvis Costello, Sigourney Weaver and Whoopi Goldberg, who notes that the Beatles were "colorless" in a world of segregation.
There's a long chat with radio newsman Larry Kane, who toured with the band in 1964-65, recording for history the madness that accompanied them from concert to concert. The band broke color lines, refusing to play for segregated audiences. It's revealed that the band only played live for the money and were frustrated early on with the touring schedule. .
The best interview is with McCartney, who recalls how he was drawn to Lennon through a shared love of songwriting. "We looked after each other," McCartney says.
Grade A. Not rated. Debuting at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 15, Fine Arts Theater, tickets now on sale, then running Sept. 16-22 at the theater.
The famous Cavern Club where the Beatles played regularly in the early years was in Liverpool. In Hamburg, the Beatles played at the KaiserKeller and the Star Club.