Monday, November 29, 2010

Movie Monday: Across the Universe

Across The Universe, 2007. Starring Jim Sturgess, Evan Rachel Wood, Joe Anderson, Dana Fuchs. (Director: Julie Taymor)

Trivia & Scenes!

Although in the scene outside the high school everyone was dressed in jackets, coats, hats etc... It was actually near 80 degrees while filming. In fact, when the camera cut, they brought umbrellas over the principal actors to keep them in the shade.

Salma Hayek specifically requested to appear in the film. When director Julie Taymor mentioned the role of the Bang Bang Shoot Shoot Nurse, Hayek replied, "Just ONE of the nurses, Julie?"


Some scenes are derived from actual 1960s events, such as the violent student protest at Columbia University. The actual explosion at a New York townhouse was the work of the Weather Underground and took place at 18 West 11th Street in Greenwich Village; a photograph of the actual house appears in the movie. The Beatles were also stopped by police while playing a rooftop concert in London while filming Let It Be (1970).

When Jude takes inspiration from the bowl of strawberries, he creates a Jackson Pollock-styled "splatter" painting. This seemingly alludes to Stuart Sutcliffe, once a bassist with The Beatles, who was a painter in the Jackson Pollock style.

The intro of the film version of "If I Fell" is borrowed from The Beatles's intro to "Good Day Sunshine."

The Cavernous club seen in the UK side of the alternating vignettes at the opening of the film is the Cavern Club in Liverpool where The Beatles played in the 60s.
Apple Records, the studio owned by The Beatles, is referenced when Jude is trying to draw a green apple, then slices it in half, thus producing the two logos of the company. The close-up shows a sliced apple almost exactly as it is on the logo.

The rooftop concert toward the end of the film is a reference to the rooftop concert of The Beatles atop Apple Records' headquarters, their final public appearance. The police interrupting the show alludes to how it really was at the Beatles' last concert in London while filming Let It Be (1970). 

During the number "With a Little Help From My Friends," a prominent poster of actress Brigitte Bardot is a reference to John Lennon's life-long obsession with her.
The character of JoJo is a clear reference to Jimi Hendrix. Sadie dresses him up in the purple shirt and bandanna - one of Jimi's most famous stage costumes. JoJo also plays a Fender guitar - the same brand played by his prototype, Jimi Hendrix. 
Sadie, with her fiery red hair and passionate temper, is a reference to Janis Joplin. Sadie is even seen drinking directly from a Jack Daniels bottle during her downward spiral, an action that Janis did regularly with Southern Comfort. Even Janis' throaty singing voice is used by Sadie in the movie.

The painted bus and Dr. Robert (Bono) singing "I am the walrus" is a reference to psychedelic painted bus The Beatles had in their film Magical Mystery Tour (1967), as well as Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters who traveled around the United States in his bus. The punch at the party is of course then "electric" Kool Aid, just like Kesey used at his parties. Finally, when Dr. Robert stops at "Dr. Geary's" place, this refers to Timothy Leary who also experimented with LSD and was often at odds with Kesey.

During the number "Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite", some of the text that appears in the background is taken directly from the vintage circus poster that inspired John Lennon to write the song.

During the number "Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite", the blue people surrounding Mr. Kite are a reference to the Blue Meanies from The Beatles animated movie: Yellow Submarine (1968).

During the underwater scene, Jude and Lucy pose alludes to John Lennon and Yoko Ono on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine Issue 335 (Jan. 22, 1981). They were photographed by Annie Leibovitz.
This film was released in the United States on John Lennon's birthday (October 9th).

Ringo Starr, Yoko Ono, Paul McCartney and Olivia Harrison praised the film after seeing it.

The psychedelically painted Porsche parked out in front of the (roof top concert) building was a reference to the 356C Porsche Cabriolet owned and driven by Janis Joplin.

Jake Gyllenhaal was considered for the role of Jude.

Jude's life progression is similar to John Lennon's. As John Lennon did, Jude first lived in Liverpool then soon after that moved to New York City to work as an artist like Lennon. Jude then encounters trouble with the law and is deported (Lennon was arrested as well, but an attempt to deport him failed).

During Jeff Beck''s instrumental cover of "A Day In The Life", Jude is seen wearing a mask and cloth cap. This is reminiscent of 'Ringo Star''s wearing the exact same clothing in during his "parading" in A Hard Day's Night (1964).

The non-existent joint in the "With a Little Help From My Friends" sequence is non-existent to ensure that the movie is not R-rated.


Papi KoRndOg said...

This is one of the first movies my wife and I enjoyed together. Its a beautiful movie all around and in our top ten list for sure. I love T.V. Carpio's version of "I wanna hold your hand" as well. Very great choice!

hanner_da_nanner said...

Thanks! This is definitely one of my favorites too! Glad you enjoyed!

Anonymous said...

Simple and sweet. I’m thinking of starting another blog or five pretty soon, and I’ll definitely consider this theme. Keep ‘em coming!

Anonymous said...

Great, i found what i 've been lookin for