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Across the Universe This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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     The title of the movie is an allusion to the Lennon-McCartney canon, which sets high standards. Director Julie Taymor fashions a musical film that lives up to the expectations of a broad audience. Written by Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais, with stunning visual techniques, 1960s politics, touching performances, and the Beatles’ greatest hits, “Across the Universe” is a solid movement in the comeback of musical filmmaking.

The plot involves a Liverpool shipyard worker, Jude, and a privileged American college student named Lucy. The two fall in love and are swept away into the hippie era, receiving guidance from Dr. Robert (played by Bono) and his Magic Bus and Mr. Kite (Eddie Izzard). The story makes a sharp turn into a vivid anti-Vietnam War statement after Lucy’s brother is drafted.

Not one aspect of the production is disappointing: costume design, visual effects, and acting are all just as I envisioned them. I particularly enjoyed the scenes in Greenwich Village, where Lucy, Jude, and their musician friends share an apartment. They effectively and colorfully embody the film’s era.

“Across the Universe” features a radiant cast including the captivating Evan Rachel Wood as Lucy and the impressive newcomer Jim Sturgess as Jude. Sturgess establishes himself as a talented musical actor, giving the most heartfelt performance and shedding a new light on every song he sings. Wood also moves the audience as Lucy suffers the loss of family and friends.

The set ties in flawlessly with the tone and message of the plot. Visual editing and 3-D animation lend to select scenes a trippy, artsy style that characterized the ’60s.

Since the story is pulled indirectly from the Beatles songbook, the film revolves around its own soundtrack. Thirty-four Beatles compositions are rerecorded with new voices and the same well-known melodies. The story line, however, reshapes the meaning. Moreover, it is actually the music and lyrics that make the intentions and desires of the characters known.

I would recommend “Across the Universe” to anyone because of its timeless themes and score, and moving performances

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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oliviarose said...
Jan. 13, 2010 at 5:33 pm:
I've watched this movie a bunch of times and I always love watching it! It literally takes some of the best of the Beatles songs and forms a story based on them.
 
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termite23 said...
May 11, 2009 at 7:44 pm:
so far the best musical not on broadway you can get. If you like the beatles , then you will love the movie!
 
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