The life affirming film Yesterday that has had a recent release on the cinema networks is having its premier at Saltdean Cinema on Tuesday 26th November - doors open at 7 pm.
‘Yesterday, all my troubles seemed so far away’. Can you read the line without hearing the song?
Someone said Beatles music is a part of our DNA: it’s become a part of who we are. If you lived through the meteoric rise to fame of the four working-class lads from Liverpool, you will recall the enormous impact that the Fab Four had on sixties culture. Today McCartney concerts are still sell outs appealing to fans across the generations.
Danny Boyle’s splendid Beatles feel-good film also spans the generations: it really doesn’t matter whether you were there in the Sixties or not. ‘Yesterday’ is a fun-filled, crowd-pleaser of a film, with universal appeal.
Picture this: you are a struggling musician, riding home on your bike, there is an incident, you fall off your bike, you are concussed, you wake up, but in an alternative timeline. You eventually discover you are the only person on earth who can remember the Beatles. What will you do?
a) Remember the songs and play them in your head?
b) Share them with someone else?
c) Pass them off as your own work and seek fame and fortune from their success?
Will temptation get the better of you? Well, for Jack Malik, (Himesh Patel: EastEnders) he chooses ‘c’ so the answer is: it does, and he does. Thus, we have the premise of ‘Yesterday’.
So starts a roller-coaster ride by the one-man Beatles. On the ride too? Money-grabbing managers, neglected loves, and sell-out tours. All hinging on Jack’s skill in remembering Beatles’ lyrics, and, of course, performing them – not such a tall order! Add to this the nagging doubt that he may one day be found out – but how? What could possibly go wrong? It’s too late to worry, no going back, the genie is out of the bottle.
This is a feel-good film. Aside from featuring some convincing high-octane performances of Beatles songs, look out especially for ‘Help’. ‘Yesterday’ manages to be a love story too. The love interest is provided by Jack’s original fan, Ellie Appleton (Lily James: ‘Cinderella’, ‘Pride and Prejudice and Zombies’, ‘Mamma Mia’) in one of her most understated and arguably best roles yet.
‘Yesterday’ manages to be a romance, a musical and a comedy – but not a musical comedy. It will leave you pondering the big issues: the potential implications of telling lies, squaring the circles of romance and world adulation and, importantly, wondering where your old records are! There are some hold-your-breath moments as Jack nears being outed as a charlatan and touching moments as he makes contact with his hero.
Taking The Beatles out of British culture is a akin to removing a colour from a spectrum: their influence is all-pervasive. Over-familiarity has probably made us blasé to their craftsmanship. You don’t have to be a Beatles fan to ‘get’ this film. Danny Boyle’s direction and the construct of the film will impress: this is expert filmmaking without pretension. Great fun - life affirming.
A change of gear next month. We have ‘White Crow’. A fascinating glimpse into the world of famous dancer Rudolf Nureyev: we see him blossoming as a student dancer; through to his dramatic escape from the KGB, in cold war Russia. NOTE - SCREENING DATE IS DECEMBER 10th.
This is our charity performance. 100% of the proceeds will be going to a small local charity.