Across The Universe

March 27, 2008 at 3:27 pm (Uncategorized)

So I mentioned this movie in my first post, but haven’t gone back to it until now.

For anyone that hasn’t seen the movie, Across The Universe is, above all else, hard to describe. It’s kind of something you just have to see. However, I’ll attempt to give a brief synopsis.

The movie follows a group of characters, whose names are all taken from Beatles songs. The main character is Jude (who looks suspiciously like Paul McCartney). He immigrates illegally from Liverpool to America to find his biological father. When he gets there, he befriends Max, an Ivy-league dropout, and falls in love with his sister, Lucy (who’s boyfriend just died in the Vietnam War). The three move out to New York City and live as bohemians with Janis Joplin-esque Sadie, Jimi Hendrix-esque Jojo, and Prudence, an ex-cheerleading lesbian. While Lucy becomes a peace activist, Jude works as an artist. The characters experience various ups and downs, and the movie gives a psychadelic take on the unstable political landscape of the mid to late 60’s. All the while singing, I might add, as the movie is a musical.

Some of my favorite covers included were “Because,” “Revolution,” “Hey Jude,” “Across the Universe,” Something,” and “Strawberry Fields Forever.” They were used in unique ways that I had never thought of before. For example, “She’s So Heavy” was used in correlation with Max, who ends up being drafted for the war. Uncle Sam is the one saying “I want you” (literally, he pops out of a poster) and soldiers are shown carrying the statue of liberty, singing “she’s so heavy.”

Like the rest of the movie, this scene is pretty symbolic. I interpreted each character as representing different influential people in the 1960’s, and the overall thing as a (trippy) representation of that time period, which was one of the craziest of all American history (especially in 1968).

Now, for those that haven’t seen it, I say trippy because, well, its just freaking trippy. The best example I can give is the end credits – the characters are underwater, naked, and in a crazy technicolor that keeps changing. The movie is strongly tied to the counterculture, which is strongly tied to hallucinogens. The effects are great.

The movie is a must because it is just good. Don’t let the musical thing freak you out (guys) because it consists of well-done Beatles covers. But especially for Beatles fans, this will rock your world. So go see it if you haven’t already.

(The underwater technicolor hookup)

(The Strawberries represent soldiers in the movie)

(I’ll never look at Uncle Sam the same again)

(Some famous co-stars…How does Bono end up in everything??)

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2 Comments

  1. holly janson said,

    OMG I love this movie. I am a big beatle fan myself and the incorporated art and acting was amazing. I was skeptical about this musical comming from the beatles instead of written from the movie, but I was pleasently surprised to find that it coorelated perfectly with what was going on. The only thing that I didn’t LOVE was the part where they go along with U2 and his crew and get lost in this circus world it was a little wierd and the part with their lesbian asian friend was a little wierd too, but from an artistic point of view it was very creative and abstract. The imagery was also cool, but I agree the Revolution scene was awsome and went really well with the visual scene.

  2. eminco said,

    After seeing this for the first time, I believe the exact terminology I used to describe it was “an LSD trip through the 60’s.” Regardless, I loved it. I have seen it 3 times now and every time gets more in depth! (Prudence “came in through the bathroom window”) Not to mention I like it more!

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