Friday, June 29, 2007

Movie Review: "The US Vs. John Lennon"

I am a huge Beatles fan. They've been my favorite band since The Beatles Anthology came out when I was in 7th grade. I've endured lots of teasing for liking a band that's been around for over 40 years but I don't care. The Beatles are the ones that shaped all types of music to the way they are today.

Anywho so I picked up this documentary because it's about a former Beatle. I figured this would be a political movie and I knew he was very into the peace movement but I didn't really know the whole story. I learned a lot of stuff while watching this movie. Many other biographies and movies about John Lennon gloss over or completely omit his political movements. For someone who was not from our country, he was very passionate about what he believed in. I didn't realize how much the US government was afraid of him and how they tried to get him kicked out of the country. You don't think about it when you see John as the moptop Beatle from the 60s who everyone loves. To think that it went all the way up to the President is kind of scary. I'm not saying that all his decisions were justified or that I agreed with everything he said. I just found it interesting about how scared the government was at the time about what a rock star's opinions would do for young people. Today celebrities say stuff all the time but no one really takes it seriously that it will affect a huge deciding factor.

What was also great was all the music that was in the film. Many of John's popular songs from the 70s were included as well as some of the more obscure ones. Also there were some Beatles songs and clips as well. There were really good interviews in here one especially with a anti war reporter who lambasted John for his beliefs.

The only thing I didn't like, yet it wasn't really an important subject matter for this movie, was that there was no mention of John's first son Julian. There's talk about Sean and the Beautiful Boy song but not even a picture of the 3 of them together. Of course Yoko is the one that helped out with this film, so that would have explained it. But I thought it would have made a nice touch.

I think if you're a Beatles fan you'll enjoy this documentary. If you are a John Lennon fan you'll definitely want to learn more about his political movements. If you grew up during this time period you'll feel nostalgic. History buffs will enjoy it too. It gives a fascinating picture to how popular culture will sway political beliefs.

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