A Hard Day’s Night (1964)

A Hard Day’s Night
Directed by Richard Lester
Written by Alun Owen
(number 413)

a Mocu-musical? A faux-day in the life? Hard Day’s night follows the Beatles as they travel by train, have shenanigans and then hang about at home, and then they hang about in a TV studio, cause shenanigans and then appear on TV and then fly off at the end. It’s not like it has a die hard story or character development, it’s the Beatles messing about and being lads.

It started with the terribly famous and oft-imitated ‘running from fans’ sequence, lots of visual jokes, hiding behind newspapers and in photo booths, etc. It felt like I’d seen it a million times already but of course I’ve only seen the imitations.

Blair found it hard to take their ‘bad reps’ seriously because they were dressed so nicely in suits, and I found it hard to take their bad reps seriously because their idea of being rebellious was to go into a field and run about pretending to be planes and falling over. It was definitely a different time!

That said it was pretty funny. There were lots of good little jokes, and I especially liked the bits where George got mistaken for a male model and Ringo wandering around all forlorn by the riverside and making friends with a kid. I read that Ringo didn’t have to act much to look so sad and pathetic, because he was nursing a nasty hangover.

The songs felt mostly pasted in, but I guess you get that with movies about pop groups. Blair made a good quip about how they must have had to pay a lot for using Beatles music in the soundtrack. It is interesting to me how very protected and hard to get the Beatles tunes are, you can’t access them on spotify or grooveshark for example. But I don’t have anything terribly interesting to say about that beyond pointing it out.

Does it make me love the people? Sure, they’re pretty adorable. It’s not very deep though! and it feels very much like a carefully designed ‘angle’ on the boys, rather than showing who they really are. Another big bit of marketing for them.

Bechdel test: Named female characters? Noooooooo….

Best line:
George: What’s the matter with you, then?
Ringo: It’s his grandfather. I can tell he doesn’t like me. It’s cause I’m little.
George: Ah, you’ve got an inferiority complex, you have.
Ringo: Yeah, I know, that’s why I play the drums – it’s me active compensatory factor.

State of Mind: I can see that Spice World was a 90s remake of this film. Also George is now my favourite Beatle. I probably will watch it again, maybe just to see if there’s something about it which I missed, because I kind of didn’t grok this movie that much.

Watched movie count

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