(IF YOU CAN GET SPOILERS FOR A BEATLES DOCUMENTARY THEN THERE ARE SOME HERE)
Plot: Documentary about the Beatles touring years, reckon that’s pretty self-explanatory
So the The Beatles: Eight Days a Week, here’s what I thought.
Right, firstly, the music is amazing, like imagine the Beatles songs but extra mega Gary-Lineker-level crisp. Ron Howard doesn’t push it into fitting his narrative but just lets you sit there and enjoy it so by the time you’re listening to their last rooftop performance you feel it was so important and so amazing and nothing could ever be better.
It feels like as well as a story of music it’s also about people managing to keep their sanity through their friendship, the story pushes you to believe they’re just friends from Liverpool that just happened to become the world’s most famous band. Howard manages to get a fair few laughs in too helping to add to the impression that the band members were always just a group of friends that you would see in the pub.
The talking heads are also very well picked out with McCartney and Starr being obvious choices but more inspired casting was the likes of Eddie Izzard and Kitty Oliver, the former to discuss the ability the group had to give a good comeback and be charismatic with the press, the latter to talk about the segregation that the band did not allow at their shows. The portion on segregation I found to be one of the strongest in the movie as watching Kitty describe what the lack of segregation meant to her gave a real feel for how big a part the group played in the culture of the world at that time.
In the way the best documentaries do Eight Days a Week lets you see how they came to the decisions they did without having to spell it out for you but if I’m honest this is one for people who have a pre-existing enjoyment of the Beatles and their camaraderie and above all their music.
If you love the Beatles music (which most people do anyway) then you’re bound to love it because even if you’re not fussed about their fan following or the effect of the touring on them then the music is what pushes the story and is what makes the concerts feel like something that just doesn’t happen every year.