Sunday, September 09, 2007

Across the Universe

The new movie "Across the Universe" opens in limited release next week. This film builds a story using Beatles songs as the framework. Even the character names are taken from Beatles songs: Jude, Lucy, Prudence, JoJo, etc.

I've been intrigued by this film since I first heard it announced. For one thing, it's directed by Julie Taymor, the person who brought puppetry to Broadway in a big way with the stage version of "The Lion King." I'm also intrigued because this idea of creating a movie storyline out of Beatles tunes has been tried before. It was called "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band," and it ranks among the worst movies ever made. Here you have folks like Peter Frampton, The Bee Gees, and George Burns playing characters mentioned in Beatles songs...Billy Shears, The Hendersons, Mr. Kite.

I have to admit having a special place in my movie-geek heart for really bad movies. "Sgt. Pepper's" is one of those that's so bad that I highly recommend it. I mean it's got George Burns singing "Fixing a Hole," what more could you ask for?

Let's hope that Taymor's film fares better.

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