HomeMovies'Yesterday' Review: A Fun, Unique Summer Movie

‘Yesterday’ Review: A Fun, Unique Summer Movie

Photo Courtesy Universal Pictures

The Beatles are timeless, having been part of our cultural zeitgeist for over fifty years. Their songs have lived on through records, commercials and film (both their own and tributes). While the band ventured onto the silver screen in films such as A Hard Days Night and Yellow Submarine, tributes to them such as Across the Universe have also been highly appreciated. The latest, Yesterday, directed by Danny Boyle, crafts a Beatles-esque world sans, well, The Beatles, that’s a beautiful tune sure to please fans who are looking for something just a bit different.

Yesterday centers around Jack (Himesh Patel), a musician who strives to make it big in a world that won’t let him. Jack enjoys strumming his guitar and hanging out with his friend, Ellie (Lily James). However, he finds himself in an accident that transports him to a world where The Beatles (and some other massive cultural happenings) never existed. Jack, playing “Yesterday” for his friends, realizes he can use arguably the greatest music ever created and become the greatest musician of all time.

The film does not succeed without its lead, and Himesh Patel kills it as Jack. As mentioned, he is a mediocre musician at best, but when he realizes he knows all these songs and can make himself famous with them, he goes for it. This creates an incredibly complex character who finds fault in what he is doing. It begs the question: is it immoral to steal music from a band that never existed?

It is something Jack deals with as his fame rises, and Patel bleeds with truth and anguish. However, it is Kate McKinnon who, unsurprisingly, steals the show as Jack’s new manager. She is energetic, hilarious and cuts right to the point. Ed Sheeran has some brilliant spots, playing an exaggerated version of himself who wants to help with Jack’s fame, while also changing the name of some of his (The Beatles’) more well-known songs. Would the tune be better as “Hey, Dude?” The world may never know.

That is one of the film’s major strengths, as Danny Boyle and writer Richard Curtis never take the film too seriously. There is plenty of fun comedy sprinkled throughout and the emotional scenes hit the right way every time. This film is a world that truly does not exist, and thus, we do not need complete logic to enjoy it. How Boyle (and his crew) craft a world that simultaneously feels current and very ’60s is impressive, something that may go unnoticed by most moviegoers.

I’m gushing about this movie, and rightfully so. It’s a lot of fun to watch and hard not to sing along to. I heard some people complain about plot holes (as with any multiverse/time travel film), but honestly, they make sense in the context of the film. If I had one problem, it’s that the film zips by too quickly, but that just means, if you really want to, you could watch it more times in a day.

People often wonder what it would be like to be a part of the phenomenon that was hearing The Beatles for the first time. Yesterday isn’t able to offer that, per se, but it does come as close as humanly possible. You FEEL as though you are hearing “I Want to Hold Your Hand” and “She Loves You” for the first time, as the music is the same, but different to fit Jack’s vibe. The crowds go wild, the world is in love and Jack is famous, though troubled. A complex character, a wacky plot, beautiful film and art direction make for a fun summer movie that is the right amount of different for people not to complain Hollywood is out of ideas. If you get the chance, go support Yesterday and remember just how impactful and important The Beatles are.

Yesterday is now playing in theaters nationwide.


Most Recent

Stay Connected