Josh and I were looking to do something while the girls were out doing their own thing, and we decided to go see Yesterday. This is director Danny Boyle’s latest film and stars Himesh Patel and Lily James. The film takes place in the UK. Himesh Patel plays Jack Malik, and nice guy but unsuccessful local singer-songwriter. Lily James plays his close friend and manager. Unsuccessful is one way to put it, but “struggling” is more like it. He keeps playing these small gigs where only his small circle of good friends are the biggest percentage of the audience.
One day, he’s completely fed and quits music. That night, there’s an odd power outage, and Jack gets hit by a bus and wakes up in the hospital. Soon after, he learns that the world has inexplicably changed. Random things like Coca-Cola and cigarettes don’t exist…. as well as the Beatles. Sensing a unique opportunity, he does a recording session of him singing a set of Beatles singles, and begins to release them online. He gets discovered, opens for the real-life Ed Sheeran in Moscow, then gets super famous as an even bigger viral sensation. He gets a record deal, signs up with Ed Sheeran’s soulless manager Debra (played by Kate McKinnon). He gets famous for pretending to write the songs written by John and Paul, but he’s also drifting apart from Ellie.
Neither Josh or I gott the point or message of the film. The writers never explained why or how reality was altered, or why some people do remember the old reality. The film uses the music from the Beatles catalog, but there’s no reason to single out the Beatles. The writers could have erased the music of U2, the Rolling Stones, Michael Jackson, or anyone really. There was no connection between the story and the music of the Beatles. There was no clear message or point at the end either.
Who should watch this film? I’d say that if you want to see the music of the Beatles applied as a soundtrack to a film, go ahead. I hate to say this, though, but you might be better off listening to the Beatles on your own, and saving yourself $13.