A Hard Day’s Night-1964

A Hard Day’s Night-1964

Director-Richard Lester

Starring-The Beatles

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Reviewed August 18, 2014 

Grade: C

Why this rock documentary, day in the life style film is considered among the Top 100 films of all time completely escapes me. I’m a huge fan of the Beatles, but found the film a disappointment.

The segments consisting of musical numbers performed by the band are excellent and, humming along, I enjoyed the black and white filming of the “documentary” as well, but the film is not a documentary in the traditional sense and is very difficult to categorize.  Is it a rock opera?  Is it a comedy? Is it a documentary? Is it a musical? It is somewhat of a hybrid as the viewer journeys through a typical day in the life of a Beatle. But all else seems fluff to the point of silliness. Countless scenes of the band running through the streets with adoring fans screaming and chasing after them become irritating. There is little plot to the film. The Beatles were a huge band. We get it.

Paul, George, Ringo, and John do a capable job in the film, considering they are non-actors, but I’d much rather have been exposed to a straightforward documentary focusing on the background of some of the songs or of the band members themselves instead of a lightweight tale of a day in the life of The Beatles with silly attempts at humor thrown in.

A Hard Day’s Night reportedly influenced the 1960’s television comedy starring The Monkees.

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