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All You Need Is Love at last available on DVD ... (1 Viewer)

andrew markworthy

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... unfortunately for most of you folks, it's only available in Europe at the moment: All You Need Is Love DVD - Home

If you're asking 'what's All You Need Is Love other than the title of a Beatles song?', it was a superb documentary on the history of popular music made for ITV (at the time, the only Brit commercial TV channel) in the late seventies. It was shown once and once only and because of copyright issues, was never repeated and has never been available on tape or disc until now.

Forget the vacuous uncritical pap that now passes for pop music documentaries (or 'rockumentaries' if you will), this is the real deal. It is a commentary-free, 17 x 54-minute episode survey of popular music from the turn of the twentieth century up to the late 1970s. Practically every person of note alive at the time was interviewed, and archive footage only used as a last resort. Take for example, the following list:

Aretha Franklin; Billie Holiday; Bing Crosby; Bo Diddley; Buddy Rich; Dizzy Gillespie; Duke Ellington; Dusty Springfield; Edith Piaf; Eric Clapton; Everly Brothers; Glen Campbell; Hoagy Carmichael; Jerry Lee Lewis; Joan Baez; Judy Garland; Liberace; Muddy Waters; Paul McCartney and Wings; Richard Rodgers; Ruth Etting; The Beatles; The Bee Gees; The Rolling Stones.

And that's just episode 1.

Critics of the time rated it on a par with World at War and having had a brief look at the discs it deserve its reputation (I was enthralled by it when it was first broadcast but I was 16 at the time, so I wasn't quite prepared to trust my adolescent critical judgement). But it isn't just a muso's delight. When it was broadcast, it was actually damaging the soccer viewing figures on the rival BBC channel - an unheard of achievement.

If you have any claims to like great documentaries, this is a series you must see.
 

Ockeghem

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Thanks for posting this. The reviews of it are quite good. And the list of those featured isn't even complete. This is a must-buy for me. I do hope I can purchase all of the episodes as they are issued. I can't tell if they will be available individually or only as a boxed set. Do you have any idea what the price for the entire set will be? The information reads L39-99. Thanks. :emoji_thumbsup:
 

andrew markworthy

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The price is about 35 to 40 pounds for the full set in the UK (I'm a Brit, so I've no idea how much it will be in the USA). I doubt whether in the UK at least single volumes will be made available - with similar documentary series they generally haven't (the one exception I can think of is The World at War). But to be honest, you really need the full set.

An extra snippet of information - this may be old hat to many of you, but I only discovered it today. If any of you are Mike Oldfield fans (and come on, I can't be the only one prepared to come out of the closet and admit it) Tony Palmer's The Space Movie (an official NASA film of the Apollo missions) with a soundtrack by Mike Oldfield (including music and versions of album tracks unavailable elsewhere) is out on DVD after many years of being only available on geriatric VHS or bootleg DVDs.
 

Ockeghem

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Yep, I saw Oldfield's name as one of those featured. (I looked at the synopses of each of the seventeen episodes.)
 

Ruz-El

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sounds impressive! I'll have to keep my eye out for a sale though. $100 is a bit much for a blind buy.
 

andrew markworthy

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My guess is that it will get a US release pretty soon - I believe the series was shown in the USA and the overwhelming majority is about American music (the only heavily Brit bits are the episode about the Beatles and the final couple of episodes have quite a bit about Mike Oldfield, Led Zeppelin, Roxy Music et al).

I would say that the price may drop pretty soon, but in the past I've waited an eternity for box sets to come down in price. As to whether it's worth it - I doubt whether you'd think the series was bad (imagine if e.g. an American recommended a Brit to watch Ken Burns's Civil War sight unseen), but at the moment at this price I'd say it's for hardened music fans. If it's any consolation, it cost me 70 dollars at current exchange rates.

Anyway, it's nearly 9 p.m. on this side of the Herring Pond as I'm typing this and I'm off to watch a couple of episodes back to back.
 

Tim Tucker

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Given the music licensing situation in the US, I would be surprised if this ever got a R1 release.
 

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