Across the Universe – Beatlemania

Across the Universe     A

Starring Jim Sturgess, Evan Rachel Wood, and Joe Anderson
Directed by Julie Taymor (Frida)
Rated PG-13 for some drug content, nudity, sexuality, violence and language
Appropriate for ages 13+

The Story: This musical, set to the music of the Beatles, follows a young British man named Jude (Sturgess) that comes to America and falls in love with a young girl named Lucy, all against the backdrop of 1960’s Vietnam. 

The Good: As a huge musical fan, and as a huge Beatles fan, one can easily understand why I would love this film.  Not only are the songs some of the best the Fab Four wrote, but the arrangements here are fantastically put together with a wild spectrum of beautiful voices performing them.  I will go so far as to say that some of the pieces are better than the originals such as Come Together (performed by Joe Cocker), I Am the Walrus (performed by Bono), Strawberry Fields Forever, and an incredible rendition of Dear Prudence.  Brought to the screen by famous stage director Julie Taymor (Broadway’s The Lion King), it is no surprise that the look and choreography of the film are quite stunning.

The Bad: While there are a few little plot problems here and there, and some of the film feels disjointed at times, the movie is so likable that one can’t help but overlook these forgivable offenses.  Also, the pic tends to feel like a large scale music video at times, but I think that’s what most people expect anyhow. 

The Summary: This addictive and ambitious little pic will help you remember why you loved the Beatles so much in the first place.