Shall start by telling that this is not ‘another’ The Beatles film. No, it isn’t. This is not a biopic about John Lennon as film only deals and dramatizes a very important moment in Lennon’s life when he was a teenager. So, don’t expect to see anything else and surely you will enjoy Sam Taylor-Wood directorial debut as her film absolutely shows her background as a photographer and conceptual artist.
Movie story shows how John was close to his uncle George and when he suddenly dies, how her mother Julia enters his life to influence his future and how living alone with his stern aunt Mimi was not easy until he manages to make peace with her. This is a family drama about a boy that ends up living with his uncle and aunt; and you’ll learn the details of what happened to this family with flashbacks to when John was a young boy. But also you will see the dramatization of how John forms his fist band, The Quarrymen, which leads to him meeting Paul and later on George.
John Lennon has become a myth and a legend to many and there are not many films or documentaries that succeed to portrait John as human; in my opinion this film highly succeeds to portrait him as human thanks to a very good screenplay by Matt Greenhalgh (who also wrote great Control), the amazing performances by Aaron Johnson as John, Kristin Scott Thomas as Mimi and Anne-Marie Duff as Julia; add high production values plus Taylor-Wood’s directorial debut that slowly but surely involves viewers into this voyage of great framing compositions, some great visuals, careful era (50’s) recreation details, and most of all, a very emotional and entertaining end-product.
Was positively impress with Aaron Johnson performance but most of all with the two leading ladies that truly give outstanding performances as the very different stranded sisters Mimi and Julia. Just for these performances film is worth watching but story, no matter if has or not too many creative liberties, is also compelling and entertaining. I am (or was?) a huge Paul fan but admit that after watching this film I warmed-up my own image of John, that’s how good story and film was for me.
Took me a while to watch this film so if you haven’t seen it yet I highly recommend this family drama that surely will entertain you beyond your expectations IF you don’t expect a film about The Beatles or John as the myth/legend; after all this is a good period drama extremely well-recreated with some outstanding music/songs from the era, which of course is before The Beatles.
Watch trailer @MOC