Sunday, 4 July 2010

Lennon Naked

Lennon Naked (BBC4) takes on the baton from Sam Taylor-Wood's recent film Nowhere Boy, dealing with the period from the height of Beatlemania in 1964 to the band's split, the start of his solo career and his total immersion in Yoko Ono. But central to the drama is an earlier moment in John's life, a day on the beach as a child when he is forced to choose between his mother and father and ends up being abandoned by both. This tearing apart is key to the rest of his life, and comes up again and again – when his father, beautifully played by Christopher Fairbank, reappears in his life, and when John in turn abandons his own son Julian. Not just Julian, but everything – first wife Cynthia, Paul, the Beatles, the ridiculous mock Tudor Surrey mansion/prison, England, clothes, everything except Yoko.
This continual looking back over the shoulder to childood, to his mother and father, takes Lennon Naked beyond the merely biographical: it gives it a depth and a Freudian quality. We're talking naked, as in laid bare, as well as the well-documented, well-photographed, stark-bollock kind of naked, which – hats off to him – Christopher Eccleston does too, bits'n'all.

thats it basically a synopsis of the 90 min drama,not a Documentary but almost 
I have spent a good deal of my life growing up with "Great" music T-Rex Beatles Stax soul music Motown ,Pink Flyod ,the Who Rolling stones  Queen etc what can i say my parents had taste
I had my own fledgling bands as a youth that i listen to now "Shakespears sister vastly underrated and what they did for "Indie pop" is without question ,Oasis Got to support  the home team ,stone roses prodigy dance etc
but i always came back to the Beatles and John 
I identified with him and Von gough being my heroes i related to artisticly my Grandfather will always be my greatest hero 
and this as so many if not all films are done the 59 to 63 period the best one being "Back Beat " nobody has improved on Ian Hart's performances he is the exception 
 but i am more interested in the interesting time of 67 to 70 and would love a film on his time in the 70s 
But here we have a 67 to 70 film 
and what a film i could quote the lines as i new the interviews off by heart ,I did say i was a Beatle Lennon fan right ?
and this put it all there it wasn't kind or nice or gentle or PC it was naked it was all laid out for you to see 
I thrilled to it all it was summed up in the line "I live in a stockbrokers house and i own a business" how far away could he get from himself the inner agony the torment and the kindred spirit in Yoko played here by another "Who" alumni brilliantly
Lennon was a tortured creative genius a Artist truly he saw music in sounds and if anyone's heard the full revolution 9 then you will attest to the ten minutes of sounds incoherent jumbled but weirdly make sense this man was trapped and suffocating  and needed out if anything this threw a new light on johns point of view of the great mystery of the events of the time this is all of course based on john and what there is of the Beatles a brilliant paul is little but enough 

It made me realise how ahead of his time a white canvas attached to a ceiling that had in small writing "Yes" written on it was heavily criticised at the time but now is it art well is half a cow in formaldehyde is a pile of bricks ?
Chris Eccleston in a break away from his usual stock trade of grumpy northerner, is nothing short of stunning his accent his body language obviously a lot of home work has gone into it 
He delivers Lennons wit and mannerisms and looks brilliant not so good as younger 64 Lennon  Eccleston is 46, 6 years older than when Lennon died 15 years older than Lennon is supposed to be at the end off the film, and 22 years older than he is at the start ,is it a problem ?, No It's still a brilliant performance, in a brilliant film, because what Eccleston does get spot-on is the spirit of Lennon, with all his complications, contradictions and demons. It's certainly no whitewash. He's cruel to everyone – Brian Epstein, Cynthia, little Julian, the rest of the band, everyone except Yoko. He's bitter and troubled, yet also idealistic while some continuity errors were obvious and other details were shall we say creatively different from reality
There was shots also of the primal scream therapy and intercut with actual Lennon Beatle footage 
This film focused mainly on his Dad and his relationship with him troubled as  it was and again something i related to 
It was very funny too, full of acerbic putdowns. The press conferences, where he returns caustic one-liners with top spin at the assembled press, are fabulous very Lennon ,Eccleston hit this note perfect 
on a budget  well maybe it was it dosent show 
made me wonder tho what a full scale film with the resources time and money could achieve 
And  it proves what i have been saying for many years this is a era and story that needs telling 

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