Across The Universe is a fictional love story set in the 1960s amid the turbulent years of anti-war protest, the struggle for free speech and civil rights, mind exploration and rock and roll. At once gritty, whimsical and highly theatrical, the story moves from high schools and universities in Massachusetts, Princeton and Ohio to the Lower East Side of Manhattan, the Detroit riots, Vietnam and the dockyards of Liverpool. A combination of live action and animation, the film is paired with many songs by The Beatles that defined the time. Written by
During Jeff Beck''s instrumental cover of "A Day In The Life", Jude is seen wearing a mack and cloth cap. This is reminiscent of 'Ringo Star''s wearing the exact same clothing in during his "parading" in A Hard Day's Night (1964). See more »
The movie clearly takes place in November (hence Thanksgiving) in and around New York City and progresses from there, but snow is never seen. Also, it would be way too cold to be driving around with the top down in a convertible. See more »
Is there anybody going to listen to my story all about the girl who came to stay? She's the kind of girl you want so much, it makes you sorry. Still, you don't regret a single day. Aw, girl. Girl...
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Wow. My teen-aged son recommended this movie to me. I expected crap, but this went far beyond my expectation. The oh-so-pitiful storyline. How to tell you? Trying to tie Beatles lyrics together, like a concept album, with some clown who looks like Paul McCartney...and the most ludicrous symbolism I've ever seen. "She's So Heavy/Carry That Weight"... astounding. See, a team of US soldiers walks the jungles of Viet Nam carrying The Statue of Liberty. The soldiers reminded me of Egyptian slaves, building the pyramids (in Hollywood movies, anyway), which my mind received as The United Slaves of America. Surely, that's not what the film-maker intended. Surely, we were being prompted to remember that 'Freedom isn't free'.
Anyway, Princeton is a shot location...a student drops out and is drafted. A rich kid gets drafted. Yeah, right. Anyway, an English kid is in the movie. So is a blonde American girl. And an Asian girl who is, by musical necessity, a lesbian? Her name's Prudence, and she locks herself in the closet (get it??), and is chided by her friends to 'Come out and play".
There's also a Peggy Lee-type aging rock singer who tries to belt out songs big, a la Janis Joplin...but she's run-of-the-mill American Idol material, at best...but with a LOT of hair. That's all there is. Somehow, the black guy goes from Otis Redding to Jimi Hendrix. Shrug. He's not the only token here, This cliché-fest is loaded with tokens. Nothing is real.
People get stoned. People get laid. People go to war (some return after pleasant musical run-ins with sexy nurses - wink!). Predictably, our English hero emigrates to the USA. I am at a loss to explain why the director didn't close the film with him standing next to the Statue of Liberty flashing a peace sign.
Images fall out like endless koolaid in a paper-cup.
Excuse me, I have work to do. I have to rescue my teenager from saccharine mediocrity.
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