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Posts Tagged ‘John Lennon’

The Beatles Get Back: An Inexpert Review

Mon ,13/12/2021

I really like the Beatles so I was excited to see that “The Beatles Get Back” was now available on Disney. It was a three-part series with each part lasting over two hours. What could be better than almost 8 hours of the Beatles? It turned out it wasn’t exactly what I expected.

I first saw the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan show. Like most everyone else, I really liked them. They had a fresh new sound and immediately became a hit. I bought some of their albums, I listened to them on the radio, and I saw Paul McCartney perform when he was in Wichita in 2017. Other than that, I didn’t know much about what happened to them after they returned to England. I was interested in finding out more about their early years, their families, and what happened to them after the band broke up. I thought that this series would fill me in on that.

Part One started off great. It described how the band got together, their tours, how their popularity grew, and snippets of some of their greatest hits. They became so popular that they decided they would not perform in public because of all the commotion it caused. In 1968, they took a trip to India where they studied Transcendental Meditation (TM) with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. The trip had an influence on their music and their lives as they denounced the use of drugs in favor of Transcendental Meditation. After that 20-minute introduction, the series shifted to the Beatles’ 1969 decision to perform in public again. The next two hours of Part One described Days 1 through 7 of practice for that new public performance. It gave some insight into their interactions and a bit of information about their special friends. Mostly, it was just them playing a bit, talking, and much smoking. It might be of great interest to diehard Beatles fans, but otherwise, it was mostly uninteresting.

Part Two was day 8 through 16 of practice, and very little of interest happened except that George Harrison decided to leave the band. John, Paul, and Ringo convinced him to rejoin the band – and they moved the jam sessions to Apple Studios. They changed their plans for their upcoming public appearance from Libya, then to outdoors in London, and finally to the rooftop of the Apple Studio.

Part Three finds them finally moving to the roof of the studio and giving their public appearance to the people who happened to be on the street below. It spent an inordinate amount of time focusing on the police officers who tried to close them down because of the public disturbance. Still, it was much like attending one of their concerts and the music was great. Unless you’re really a serious Beatles fan, I would recommend you watch the first 20 minutes of Part One and all of Part Three. That will be about two hours and 40 minutes long and you will get the flavor of the series without spending 8 hours.

I was curious about what happened to the Beatles after the band broke up. Though most people liked the Beatles, a few on the religious right considered them non-Christians and socialists. In 1980, John Lennon was shot to death on his doorstep by a religious fanatic. Yoko Ono, John’s wife, has since become known worldwide as an artist and activist. She has used Lennon’s fortune for philanthropic causes and to spread his message of peace and love.

In 1999, George Harrison was stabbed by an intruder who hated the Beatles and thought George Harrison was a witch. Harrison survived the attack but died two years later of lung cancer. He had earlier survived throat cancer which he attributed to years and years of heavy smoking. Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr are both alive and well and have recently been doing tours. They did one performance together that brought the house down with their rendition of Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band. However, their touring days now seem over. I felt very lucky to be able to see Paul McCartney on one of his last tours.