What Could We Possibly Learn from Ron Howard’s New Beatles Documentary? – Flavorwire
An electrifying film about the Beatles is currently playing in select movie theaters across the country – thrilling and energetic, joyful and skilled, giving us a glimpse of these four iconic performers that we’ve never quite seen. There’s also a new Beatles documentary that you have to watch first. The good movie is The Beatles at Shea Stadium, a beautifully restored presentation of that full performance (all thirty minutes of it) from 1965. The other movie screening with it is The Beatles: Eight Days a Week – The Touring Years, covering (roughly) the period of 1963-1966, and telling the story of how the Beatles conquered the world. Again.Let us be clear here: the Fab Four did not live undocumented lives. We have, first of all, the authorized (and still definitive) Beatles Anthology, which runs a staggering ten hours in eight parts. Before that, there was the efficient introduction The Compleat Beatles, and the Maysles Brothers’ non-fiction Hard Day’s Night, What’s Happening! The Beatles in the USA. Their story was retold in documentaries about John Lennon (Imagine: John Lennon; LennoNYC; The U.S. vs. John Lennon), George Harrison (Living in the Material World), and Paul McCartney (Wingspan). There’s a whole cottage industry of unauthorized straight-to-video “documentaries,” assembled from various public domain materials and soundalike recordings, with titles like Magical Mystery Tour Memories, Fun with the Fab Four, Rare and Unseen: The Beatles, and Paul McCartney Really is Dead: The Last Testament of George Harrison (yes, really). We’ve had Good Ol’ Freada, a documentary about their secretary; The Sixth Beatle, a documentary about their first promoter, just premiered at Toronto. So even as an officially sanctioned Apple Corps. Production, what could Eight Days a Week possibly add?