Yesterday is pretty easy to forget.
Yesterday is a film that played odd. Yeah, I get that British rom com style fantasies attract a certain degree of weirdness. After watching Richard Curtis make the most emotional Dr. Who episode ever with About Time, I’m not sure what I expected here. If you went by the trailers, it was a fantastic romp through the Beatles music and what it means to live in a world without love. That’s a sly dig at another group that aped the Beatles in a roundabout way.
Danny Boyle is still one of the best directors living. However, he’s a very English filmmaker in a way befitting a Carol Reed or Stevenson. Simple enough to tell a story, but there is that nagging desire to say something onscreen. But, what do you do in a film about a nobody stealing popular music that no one else can remember? It’s the futility of fame when collapsed into a vacuum of lapsed pop culture.
The romantic comedy as a summer release isn’t new. Hell, Lily James starred in the rather awful Mamma Mia sequel last summer. It’s just that most romantic comedy and movies like that tend to perform better as original properties. When your story is dependent on satisfying a fantastical premise, then it undercuts how natural stories develop. You don’t care about guy meeting girl, if guy has to fulfill the promise of keeping Lennon/McCartney’s music from fading away.
The Beatles take center stage, as every decision made by the lead character is saving a legacy that nobody remembers. It’s a bizarre hole to trap yourself in from a storypoint. But, you don’t spend 10 million dollars to get the music rights and not use them. There is nothing hear that couldn’t be an hour long episode of an anthology series. Yet, all studios feel that they have to go bigger and broader to satisfy an indifferent summer audience.
In the long run, Yesterday will have its fans. I’m not sure what else I’m supposed to say. There is a large chunk of the populace that just wants to confirm their love of the things they always loved. No tugging, no pull and nothing else possible. Yesterday is an easy movie to like and it doesn’t surprise me it was a hit. I just expected something more. Especially from Richard Curtis.
The 4K UHD comes with a stunning 2.39:1 2160p transfer. The Dolby Atmos track is reference quality when it comes to the bigger music scenes. When it comes to smaller moments, you’re left with a ton of channels not being used. Other than that, you get deleted scenes and an alternate ending. That not cool enough? Well, there is some material with Ed Sheeran. What Universal does with this release is something I love. All of the special features are in 4K. It’s a killer perk and one that makes me recommend this release for a purchase.