Get Back

The Beatles — Get back

15 February, 2022

I finished watching Peter Jackson's eight-hour documentary Get Back about the Beatles.

It's an amazingly assembled movie (I want to say «filmed», but it was filmed 53 years ago, and it's only now being edited properly). Peter Jackson deserves a small memorial for this rather extensive work: the whole story is known in advance, but the structure, editing, proper accents, humor and a huge amount of new material (compared to Let it Be) keep you entertained.

Get Back can be watched as a TV series: the whole narrative is divided into days of 10-15 minutes during one month. The Beatles rehearse, joke, plan something, disintegrate into atoms, move deadlines and get back together again, but with the intention to finish the album and go their separate ways. All this is shown in a very lively and human way, without swearing and almost without controversy. People play and enjoy rehearsing together and writing new songs.

By the way, I never thought of the Beatles as proto-punks, but a random rooftop concert — with no permission and no announcement, free for all random people and ignoring the cops who came because of noise complaints — is very punky.

And come to think of it: a crowd of random people on the streets managed to accidentally attend an almost random performance by a band for the first time in years. A band that ceases to exist almost immediately after that show. And we get to see it 53 years later in full, with color and sound, with all the backstory and a month of rehearsals for the first time. It's almost like seeing a dinosaur live in its natural habitat in its native time.

I grew up on this music and am extremely pleased with what I've seen. There seems to be a 2:20 version, but I prefer the full one.

• • •