The singing group, The Beatles, at the height of their popularity, made this cartoon of a land that is taken over by the Blue Meanies. They are recruited by an escapee to come and bring joy (and music) back to the land. The techniques are quite psychedelic in the cartoons and much care was taken to have the walks and mannerisms of the individual Beatles cartoons match the originals. Written by
John Vogel <email@example.com>
What COULD compare? Yellow Submarine is 130,000 frames (90min x 60sec x 24 frames/sec) of classical, pop, tribute (to earlier animation styles), and original art from Da Vinci to Warhol to Picasso to Popeye to unbridled hallucination, drawn to a best-of-Python screenplay of non-sequiturs, puns, and pokes at institutions from cold-war antagonists to (governor) Reagan's paranoid National Guard deployment against counterculturists.
It's a feast for the senses and sensibilities. One can revel in the flashing, dancing colors and art styles--most of which well-shame anything Disney ever attempted and make today's phony-depth digital claptrap look like spilled esophageal reflux. The soundtrack is a condensed spectrum of the range with which Lennon/McCartney/Harrison composed, from deeply contemplative (Eleanor Rigby) to near-post-adolescent exuberance (Harrison's contributions) to silly-love-song filler showtunes (All Together Now). The dialog exchanges keep viewer's verbal senses on the edge of their seats. The theme undercurrents lightheartedly appeal nostalgically to those who were drawn to it in its theatrical release, historically to those who still wonder 'what the 60s was all about', without getting in the way of sheer artistic ebullience.
If you're an adult, it helps to like animation and British-invasion-era music (or Mozart, Bach, Beethoven, Rodgers & Hammerstein, for that matter). If you're an adult watching it with your kids (there's nothing offensive), be prepared for them to groan at Disney/Pixar/Nickelodeon rubbish from then on, and say "I want more of THAT!"
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