It seems like only yesterday, but A Hard Day’s Night is now 57 years old. Richard Lester’s musical is getting better with age. The Beatles ditched Strawberry Fields and Penny Lane, hitting the big screen for the prototype rock and roll movie. Lester’s work has inspired a plethora of rocumentaries that have infused the real and the surreal, from This Is Spinal Tap to Lady Madonna’s Truth Or Dare (In Bed With Madonna).
Showing a day in the life of The Beatles at the height of Beatlemania, A Hard Day’s Night follows the Fab Four as they dodge fans and music executives to deliver their pop hits in a film which is a cinematic homage to La Nouvelle Vague. John, Paul, George and Ringo go here, there and everywhere as they are chased down by screaming fans who are eager to get them into their lives. This movie helped cement The Beatle’s off-screen personas, casting a long shadow over the rest of their careers. These separate characters come together to create a group that changed the face of not just pop music, but the world, making fans (then and now) eager to say hello, goodbye.
Today everybody’s got something to hide except me and my monkey, but back in the swinging sixties things were different. This may have been seen as a quick cash-grab by United Artists who were eager to score some soundtrack money from the scorching hot foursome before things cooled (money can buy you a lot of things, but it can’t buy you love). At the time The Beatles were working eight days a week, as everyone wanted to to be their baby (except the Taxman who they had to give a a hefty cut of their money). Little did anyone know that the magical mystery tour would still be rolling-on half a century later. It has been a long and winding road, but fans won’t let it be as The Beatles continue to please, please them.
We’ll never get back to that time of innocence – a time of revolution, before things went helter skelter. It was long before Allen Klein, Yoko Ono, Heather Mills and before Mark David Chapman destroyed all the happiness with a warm gun. It was a time of real love, when people felt free as a bird. The Beatles music isn’t for no one – it’s for everyone.
It’s a remarkable feat that still feels fresh, a testament to The Beatles music and Richard Lester’s direction. Do you want to know a secret? This is a great cinematic ticket to ride, featuring wonderful rock ’n roll music. Hold my hand, come and get it and get ready to twist and shout to A Hard Day’s Night.