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BTDesign Award
Across The Universe (2007)

Cast: Jim Sturgess, Evan Rachel Wood, Joe Anderson, Dana Fuchs, Martin Luther McCoy, Bono, Eddie Izzard, Joe Cocker, Salma Hayek

Director(s): Julie Taymor

Language: English

Genre: Musical


The Beatles' songs may have provided the soundtrack for the lives of those coming of age in the 1960s, but their extensive catalogue acts as the literal soundtrack in this romantic musical from visionary director Julie Taymor. Newcomer Jim Sturgess stars as Jude, a young man working on the docks in Liverpool. Eager to escape, he travels to Princeton where he meets Max (Joe Anderson). But it's his meeting with Max's younger sister Lucy (Evan Rachel Wood) that changes him. They quickly fall in lov... [Get complete synopsis]


motleymitch wrote on May 20, 2008, 9:22 am
Not a terrible flick, but the gimmick runs dry pretty fast. It's pretty much an excuse to take a bunch of Beatles songs and sequence them to get some generic storyline about love and life amongst a bunch of hipsters set to a backdrop of war (will they use the song 'Revolution'? Only TAIIME will tell!)
Naturally, all the characters are named Lucy, Prudence, Maxwell, Jude, Jo-Jo, Sadie, Dr. Robert, etc....
Some of the song renditions are unique, others....not so much. And keep your eye out for some cameos by Joe Cocker, Salma Hayek, Eddie Izzard, and unfortunately, Bono as the aforementioned Dr. Robert (THAT dropped rating by at least a star! The film has been soiled! SOILED!)
On the upside, the cinematography and visuals are bright, creative, and sometimes surreal. Although this is primarily a musical, I could see shutting off the sound and having it play on a wall in the background at a party.
It just got to a point, not far into the film, where you roll your eyes at every new character introduced, and some of the 'look-we're-clever-by-referencing-the-Beatles' moments. Such as:

"This is Prudence."
"How'd she get here?"
"Through the bathroom window!"

Ho ho ho, we get it.
To be honest, I was at a friend's house and we were drinking a lot of wine and casually talking throughout the film, so it's not like you really need to pay attention to know what's going on. Better than 'Moulin Rouge' (which I hated), but that diesn't take much. Casual Beatles fans may like it, purists might not.
motleymitch wrote on May 20, 2008, 9:23 am
Eddie Izzard as Mr. Kite.

motleymitch wrote on May 20, 2008, 9:25 am
Papamikey wrote on June 28, 2009, 12:11 am
I both agree and disagree with Mitch. I agree that the schtick got stale after a while, but I think it took longer to GO stale for me...I started getting weary of the admittedly tacked on Beatles songs toward the end as I think the movie ran about 20 minutes TOO long and tied up TOO nicely.

I did like the Bono stuff (obviously) and enjoyed some interesting new takes on old "pop"ish Beatles songs...

Was a good film in the end.

Maybe it was a bit TOO obvious, but were Sadie and Jo-Jo homages to Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix?


Papamikey wrote on June 28, 2009, 12:16 am

From Wikipedia - which NEVER lies...

"where they share an apartment with others, most notably Sadie (Dana Fuchs), their landlady, who is an aspiring singer and a representation of Janis Joplin. Other residents include Jojo (Martin Luther McCoy), a guitarist representing Jimi Hendrix, who arrives from Detroit, Michigan "

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