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Title: Yesterday (2019)
Director: Danny Boyle
Screenplay Writer: Richard Curtis
Genre(s): Comedy | Fantasy | Music
Runtime: 1 hour 56 minutes
SHOW RATING OVERVIEW ★★★★ (4.66 Stars)
Writing/Story: ★★★★★ | Cinematography: ★★★★★ | Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★
IMDB STORY LINE:
In Lowestoft UK, Jack Malik is a frustrated musician whose musical career is going nowhere despite the faith that his friend/manager Ellie Appleton has in him. However, on the night Jack decides to give up, the whole world is momentarily hit with a massive blackout that lasts just 12 seconds. During this strange event, Jack is hit by a bus. Upon regaining consciousness, Jack learns to his astonishment that he is apparently now the only one who knows the music of the Beatles. Realizing this improbable opportunity, Jack begins playing the music of the greatest rock band, claiming it as his own. It pays off quickly and Jack becomes a worldwide musical sensation. However, Jack finds himself drifting away from Ellie, only realizing his love for her when she has become intimidated by his success, which is dependent on a blatant plagiarization that no one could find out. Now, Jack must make a fundamental moral decision about his music to satisfy his conscience as he decides what he truly needs.
MY 2 CENTS:
This movie went under the radar for me. I never heard about it until I was scrolling through my movie apps one day. I had seen Bohemian Rhapsody (which I loved) and Rocketman (which I thought was just ok), but had never even heard of Yesterday. When I found out it was all about The Beatles… and that it takes place in modern day, I was intrigued.
Basically, it asks the question; What would you do if you were a musician and one day you woke up and The Beatles never existed? You’re the only one who knows who The Beatles are—or were—and you know all their songs. Would you play their music and claim it as your own?
That is exactly what Jack Malik, played by Himesh Patel, did in this film.
This film was fun and fast paced. The way the writer incorporated the music of The Beatles so smoothly really leads to the question, if The Beatles has started today… would their music have done as well? The music was obviously fantastic for anyone, like myself, who loves The Beatles. If you don’t like the music of The Beatles, don’t watch this film.
To be honest, I don’t typically enjoy musicals. I can watch them. I can appreciate the talent it takes to create them. However, I have a hard time suspending my disbelief. I didn’t have that problem with this film. Yesterday is different than other music centered films such as Rocketman and Bohemian Rhapsody. This one isn’t about The Beatles. It’s not about the band. At its core, Yesterday is a musical rom-com. It’s a romantic comedy, centered around a musician who just so happens to be the only guy in the world who knows the music of The Beatles and the girl who loves him.
I really enjoyed the cinematography throughout this film. The global blackout, the moment Jack gets hit by the bus, the concert scenes… and so many other scenes are visually stunning.
OK, first let me just say that the chemistry between Himesh Patel and Lily James is amazing! For that reason alone, this is a great film to go see.
Himesh Patel is a wonderfully talented actor and musician. He actually did all his own signing and playing in the movie. He is completely natural on screen and just seems to slide right into this role.
It was fun to see that Ed Sheeran has a memorable role, playing himself in the film, and honestly did a great job. He stated in an interview that The Beatles are his main inspiration for his songs.
In my opinion, the weakest role was that of Kate McKinnon. She plays the Hollywood producer that takes Jack on and jumpstarts his career. She was fine, but she played the same over the top role she plays in most films.
Screenwriter Richard Curtis asked for Paul McCartney‘s approval of the title of the film. Sir Paul gave his blessing, but also suggested they call it “Scrambled Eggs” instead. This was a lighthearted reference to the fact that before coming up with the lyrics for Yesterday, Paul McCartney had the temporary lyrics of Scrambled Eggs as a placeholder for the song.
MY FAVORITE QUOTE:
“You want a good life? It’s not complicated. Tell the girl you love that you love her. And tell the truth to everyone whenever you can.” ~ John Lennon (Yesterday)
TO SUM IT UP:
This film is definitely worth the time!
Have you seen Yesterday? If you have, let me know your thoughts in the comments below. If not, I recommend seeing it for yourself and forming your own opinion.
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