Sunday, 7 July 2019

Yesterday


Went to see the much hyped Yesterday yesterday. Being something of a Beatles nut (clock the number of Beatles and Lennon & McCartney posts on this blog [left]), I thought it would be massively churlish of me if I didn't scribble a few words about it here.
I'm usually pretty quick out of the traps when it comes to rating and ranking new movies, but this is a little bit different - I'm still processing it, would you believe; a fantastical plot (a world without the Beatles - really?) with seemingly more holes than a used dartboard, peppered with more than a few comedy cul-de-sacs and incorporating a typically lame Richard Curtis crow-barred rom-com. And yet, and yet...


That soundtrack; those songs. For all its faults, and there are many, it's the music, ultimately, that carries this film over the line. Himesh Patel who plays struggling singer-songwriter Jack Malik, has been gifted the most fantastic set of songs all gift wrapped and ready to be devoured. And they are, for the most part, played brilliantly.   


Patel is not just a gifted actor but he can play a bit too. That means there's no awkward miming or contrived camera angles to disguise the fact that a non musical actor is holding a strange instrument around his neck and doesn't know what a chord is, let alone know where they can be found on the neck of a guitar.


Himesh Patel - Yesterday (2019)


Apart from Malek's performance (and the Beatles music, obvs) I took three positives away from the film:

Lily James - who played the love interest with just the right amount of girl next doorness. 

Ed Sheeran - just a good egg. The ginger superstar was quite happy to sit on the subs bench for much of the movie, but was given some great lines nonetheless.

The best gag in the film - when Jack Malik realises, after an internet search, that his friends really aren't winding him up when they tell him they don't know who the Beatles are, he then Googles Oasis - nothing but a clutch of exotic holiday websites. "That figures" he says.

3 comments:

  1. I popped along to see it on Thurs, here's my thoughts

    https://letterboxd.com/man_out_of_time/film/yesterday-2019/

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Mark; interesting reflections. I could talk about this film for hours - I know, I need to get out more. But, once the far-fetched premise was set, my mind was racing.
      However, it's a conversation probably best had in Ye Cracke over a few jars.
      But, and I have to say this, the Lennon playlet is awful. Truly, truly, toe-curlingly awful. Boyle, and Curtis for that matter, had a chance (more than a chance - a golden opportunity) to write one of cinema's iconic set pieces; to deliver lines that would be remembered for years to come. And what did they do? Some trite crap about boats and hugging.
      I'll get my coat.

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    2. Really? "You need serious psychiatric help" ;) Nah, in all seriousness it resonated with me I think simply because I love Robert Carlyle and because I'm an old softy who immediately melted at the thought of Lennon being alive in this alt reality.

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