Rutland Weekend Television takes a look at the Pre-fab Four: Dirk, Barry, Stig and Nasty; better known as the Rutles. This documentary follows their career from their early days in Liverpool and Hamburg's infamous Rat-Keller, to their amazing worldwide success. A parody of Beatlemania and the many serious documentaries made about the Beatles.Written by
Alexander Lum <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Eric Idle mentions in his "memoir" available on the DVD what the actual Beatles thought of the film. According to him, George Harrison was very supportive and encouraged him, Paul McCartney was disapproving at first but relented when he found that Idle grew up near Liverpool (though his wife Linda always loved it), Ringo Starr liked the happier scenes in the film, but felt the scenes that mimicked sadder times hit too close, and John Lennon (along with Yoko Ono) adored it and refused to return the videotape and soundtrack he was given for approval. He told Neil Innes, however, that "Get Up and Go" was too close to The Beatles' "Get Back" and to be careful not to be sued by ATV Music, owners of the Beatles catalogue's copyright at the time. The song was consequently omitted from the 1978 vinyl LP soundtrack. See more »
As the Rutles get off the Bognor Express train, a cameraman with a 1970s movie camera is seen following the Rutles out. This recognized as a mistake by Eric Idle on the DVD Director's commentary, where Idle also identifies the cameraman as Gary Weis (co-director and chief cinematographer). See more »
Stanley J. Krammerhead:
Listen, looking at it very simply musicology and ethnically, the Rutles were essentially imperical malengistes of a rhythmically radical yet verbally passé and temporally transcended lyrically content welded with historically innovative melodical material transposed and transmogrified by the angst of the Rutland ethic experience which elevated them from essentially alpha exponents of in essence merely beta potential harmonic material into the prime cultural exponents of Aeolian cadencic comic ...
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The original TV version contains one scene which is about 30 seconds longer than the alternate video version. Narrator Eric Idle asks Brian Thigh (Dan Aykroyd), the man who turned down the Rutles: "What's it like to be such a jerk?" He continues criticizing Thigh until he shoots himself. In the video version, Idle simply asks: "What's it like to be such an asshole?" See more »
Absolutely hilarious spoof of The Beatles. Eric Idle's finest 70 minutes and a spin off of his mid 70's TV show "Rutland Weekend Television" (Please BBC repeat this series). The songs are so clever - "I Must Be In Love' could've been an actual Beatles single it's that good. Neil Innes wrote the soundtrack which was deemed so good it was released as an album and 2 singles were released in the UK. The film follows so closely the actual events of the Beatles and George Harrison was so impressed with the script that he agreed to appear in the film. "Piggy in the Middle" (with absolutely spot on John Lennon-esq lyrics) perfectly recreates "Magical Mystery Tour" or in this case "Tragical History Tour" and the Yellow Submarine cartoon section looks so damn good that it will have you looking out for it next time you watch that film. "Love Life" is a perfect recreation of the television event of 1967 and by this point Neil Innes looks and sounds exactly like John Lennon. Everything is covered here, Lennons infamous "Bigger than Jesus" quote and it even mocks Apple (a pealed banana.) My favourite bit is Eric Idle tracing the musical roots of the Rutles, talking to 'Blind Lemon Pie' and finding out he should be talking to the bloke next door is one of the funniest few minutes of film I've seen - especially when he goes round there... "He's lying, he's always lying. Last week he said he invented the Everly Brothers." It's pant-wettingly funny. Regarded as a cult item now this is right up there with Spinal Tap but this is so much funnier, if you love the Beatles (who doesn't?) then you need to see this, one of the cleverest and most affectionate spoofs ever made. Buy the album too - for a parody the songs are superb.
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