This "biography" evolves around the nearly 240 hours of film and videotape fortuitously taken by Lennon of his life. The archive footage is transformed into a fascinating life story of one of the most complex and fascinating men of the modern music era. This effort includes a 36 song soundtrack. Includes some very personal and insightful footage, never before made available to the public.Written by
The producers transferred all available footage and recordings to laser discs, logged each one into a database and used a computer to access cuts and assemble the edit. This was an early version of non-linear editing. See more »
[a homeless-looking young man is found wandering the grounds of Lennon's Tittenhurst Park estate]
Don't confuse the songs with your own life. I mean, they might have relevance to your own life, you know, but a lot of things do. And so we've met, you know? I'm just a guy, man, who writes songs.
Yeah, I figured that if we met, I'd know, you know, just by meeting you.
But know what, man?
That it all fits, you know?
Anything fits, you know? If you're tripping off on some trip, anything fits, you know?
[...] See more »
In 1987, seven years after John Lennon's tragic murder, a book came out. I've forgotten the title and the author, but it portrayed Lennon VERY negatively. It showed him as a cruel, egotistical monster who abused drugs and alcohol up to his death. The book was written by somebody who had never talked to anybody who knew Lennon. Yoko Ono was shocked and pushed to have this documentary made to set the record straight.
It's full of home movies, news footage, videos all narrated by John Lennon himself (he recorded over 200 hours talking about his life and work). It's not a whitewash of him--it does point out he was a mean drunk and he is shown swearing and telling off Phil Spector in a recording studio when a song was not working out. It also chronicles his remark about the Beatles being "bigger than Jesus Christ" and totally ignores how horribly he treated his first wife Cynthia. But, aside from that footage, there is also interviews with Johns wives, his children and, basically, everyone who knew him (curiously, none of the Beatles were interviewed). He comes across as a very talented, peace-loving man--he has his dark moments but everybody does. His confrontations with Al Capp and Gloria Emerson are just fascinating.
I remember seeing this in a theatre in 1988 and most of the audience walked out crying. 15 years later the ending still packs a punch. It shows people crying at the peace rallies held after Lennon's death and ends with the "Imagine" video him and Yoko did. Also "In My Life" plays over the closing credits. A fascinating, very moving documentary of a great man. Recommended.
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