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Disney+ The Beatles: Get Back exclusively on Disney+ (1 Viewer)

joshEH

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Three parts, almost 8 hours total. I'm near the end of Part 2 now.

I didn't know if I'd be able to tolerate hearing bits and pieces of Let It Be-songs over and over, since it's not one of my favorite Beatles albums (I prefer all the other post-Rubber Soul albums). It's very interesting, though. It helps that I'm a collector of vintage albums, so maybe my attention-span is already attuned to this sort of thing.

Most of it is them writing and working out their parts. The candid conversations among the band members are hilarious at times. Any time one of the other hangers-on opens their mouths, it's excruciating. The director Michael is an absolute fucking knob. All his ideas for how to present the filmed concert are terrible. They were inches away from doing something really stupid instead of just going on the roof.

I read some criticism of the DNR that Jackson put on the 16mm footage. I was curious to see how I'd feel about it myself. Yup, it's hideous. It looks like a 480p YouTube video.
 

Reggie W

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Yeah, other people have been called the fifth Beatle but for Let It Be, that slot was definitely filled by Billy Preston in my mind. Not to discount the contributions of the band proper but I think Billy Preston's playing is why LIB is my favorite Beatles record they made post-Sgt. Pepper's.

There was a bit I thought was pretty funny where George is playing a song over and over he appears to have composed on the piano. It is an interesting song but George is not much of a piano player. So, he keeps bashing it out on the keys over and over seeming a bit lost with it. All the while Preston is standing there in the room and I keep thinking, "Get up George and let Billy have a crack at it."

I mean he's got one of the great keyboard players standing right there to bail him out. Finally, after multiple attempts at it George does finally ask Billy to play it.

I think Preston pulled them all out of the rut they were in when he showed up. They all brighten up when he arrives and there is much more joy about playing and making music. Prior to that when George quits the band and they have to go convince him to return they are really spinning their wheels. I think this is part of why George quits. Each member has brought in their own songs, there is not much agreement on how to play them. Paul obviously just wants the tunes he has played his way and so I think George is thinking "Why do this when we can just write and record on our own without all the back and forth and wasting time."

I think when Preston comes into the mix they all step up their game and begin trying to tighten up what they are doing. Preston is a better musician than any of the Beatles so he lifts the whole thing up.
 

Stephen_J_H

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I just watched part 1. The image is strange looking. I'm guessing it was shot on 16mm, but sometimes it looks like AI upscaled video. The whole thing has a strange color rendition, sort of a two-color Technicolor or dare I say colorized look to it.

The fly on the wall aspect and seeing the creation of familiar songs is priceless though. I'll watch the other two parts this weekend.
It's very weird and has that odd effect of smoothing textures and making people look much younger than they are. Very clearly DNR being used and then a VERY fine patina of digital grain being added back in. There is some very clearly colourised footage [the concert footage in Part 1], but overall the colour is typical of the era. However, with the noise reduction, the colour does bleed on the fringes. It also makes mildly out-of-focus shots look really weird, and you see digital futzing on other elements of the picture as well. There's a scene where John and Yoko pull up in a Rolls-Royce, and there's this bizarre digital blur around the vehicle.

This is the look Jackson has chosen for the doc, ostensibly with the blessing of Paul and Ringo, and the estates of the other two. I think this is symptomatic of certain directors working extensively with digital capture and digital tools, and asking the question "why do we actually need grain?" I would have preferred a more organic appearance myself, and I'm wondering out loud [since I haven't seen it]: do we see similar futzing in They Shall Not Grow Old?
 

Reggie W

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It's very weird and has that odd effect of smoothing textures and making people look much younger than they are. Very clearly DNR being used and then a VERY fine patina of digital grain being added back in. There is some very clearly colourised footage [the concert footage in Part 1], but overall the colour is typical of the era. However, with the noise reduction, the colour does bleed on the fringes. It also makes mildly out-of-focus shots look really weird, and you see digital futzing on other elements of the picture as well. There's a scene where John and Yoko pull up in a Rolls-Royce, and there's this bizarre digital blur around the vehicle.

This is the look Jackson has chosen for the doc, ostensibly with the blessing of Paul and Ringo, and the estates of the other two. I think this is symptomatic of certain directors working extensively with digital capture and digital tools, and asking the question "why do we actually need grain?" I would have preferred a more organic appearance myself, and I'm wondering out loud [since I haven't seen it]: do we see similar futzing in They Shall Not Grow Old?

I think there is the problem of if they went organic and just went with what the 16mm film looked like a lot of people watching it on TV would think "Well, that looks like crap."

When they do all the digital clean-up and smoothing people think it looks wonderful. I don't think most of the audience knows or cares what 16mm film looks like they much prefer the digitally cleaned look.

If you showed the 16mm image people would think it looks like old film. However, with the cleaned and scrubbed and adjusted image they feel like they are seeing something new. It sort of is what it is. I know that sounds lame but I think this is why they do all the clean-up.

I've never seen those Let It Be sessions look like that, not in terms of color nor brightness nor the amazingly smooth image. So, it did seem obvious they did a ton of work on this stuff.
 

Reggie W

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The colors are incredibly vivid, it is almost like watching a cartoon. I kept wondering if someone was dressing the Beatles for these sessions because they wear a lot of bright stunning primary colors and their outfits jump off the screen. It looks like they have been intentionally dressed in a specific way but these are just sessions where they are working out the music. The outfits look amazing on the screen though and they never are wearing the same colors really as the other Beatles when they show up. It's like Paul is calling up George and saying "I'm wearing yellow today so don't dress in anything yellow!"
 

Stephen_J_H

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The colors are incredibly vivid, it is almost like watching a cartoon. I kept wondering if someone was dressing the Beatles for these sessions because they wear a lot of bright stunning primary colors and their outfits jump off the screen. It looks like they have been intentionally dressed in a specific way but these are just sessions where they are working out the music. The outfits look amazing on the screen though and they never are wearing the same colors really as the other Beatles when they show up. It's like Paul is calling up George and saying "I'm wearing yellow today so don't dress in anything yellow!"
Exhibit 'A': George's 1961 'psychedelic' Stratocaster.
 

TravisR

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...and I'm wondering out loud [since I haven't seen it]: do we see similar futzing in They Shall Not Grow Old?
I don't recall it but that movie has a different thing going on where I'm amazed by how good the WWI footage looked. Everyone has seen people from 50 years ago on film but from 100 years ago, it's kind of startling to see people's faces and connect to them in a way that you never have before.
 

Stephen_J_H

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I don't recall it but that movie has a different thing going on where I'm amazed by how good the WWI footage looked. Everyone has seen people from 50 years ago on film but from 100 years ago, it's kind of startling to see people's faces and connect to them in a way that you never have before.
They did some frame interpolation on They Shall Not Grow Old to bring the framerate up to 24 fps, as silent films were filmed at rates ranging down as low as 12-16 fps and 24fps only became the standard once sound came in [it was, quite literally, the slowest film could run through the camera without sacrificing quality on the optical audio tracks]. I imagine some noise reduction was applied as well to make the 3D conversion go more smoothly, and they colourised the footage as well. I was just wondering if the DNR was as thickly applied.
 

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I’ve enjoyed the whole series, most def for fans, very dense.

I laughed when George said about the film being used, “We haven’t paid off the film from Magical Mystery Tour!”

Several LOL moments for me, Lennon so funny when he’s up. Was he bi-polar?

I’m a first gen fan of the Fabs. And I’ve worked with 16mm film before in my career in the early 70s. Thank god Lindsay+Hogg shot with tripods. And I liked the approach Jackson took here. Looks like it’s live or shot the day before in digital.

May have to watch again.

I went back to the deluxe LET IT BE box set. The music in the box really compliments the film.
 

Sam Posten

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Finished it. Get Back is totally earworming me. It was fascinating, personal and entertaining. I did not mind the DNR at all. If nothing else that noodling that turned into the Get Back melody/riff should be taught as a master class.

And Anyone who has ever dug too deep on the meaning of Beatles lyrics should watch how they come up with stuff. It’s not witchcraft but it is a craft. Genius.
 

David Deeb

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I also enjoy watching them work on lyrics where they often just sing sounds when they don't have words to add and then add the words based on the sounds they were singing.
This is more common than one would think for several different bands.

R.E.M.'s 25th anniversary's editions of "Out of Time" and "Automatic for the People" feature similar type of rehearsals. Theirs include many, great wordless vocals from Michael Stipe where he is humming, filling in with nonsense words to establish pacing, or just la-la-laing along with the band. His voice on these tracks is remarkable. He's still giving 100%. But he's still working on the final lyrics.
 
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Walter Kittel

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Finished part 3 earlier today. Just outstanding. I thought (echoing Josh's comments above) the repetitive nature of some of the material might become tiresome; but actually seeing the development of the songs and the various iterations was quite the opposite.

I fully expected, going into the documentary, to experience music solely from Let It Be, and was really surprised at both the wide variety of music that was covered during the tune-up sessions, and the amount of development with songs that would eventually appear on Abbey Road.

I am sure that I will revisit this again. Wonderful stuff.

- Walter.
 

Scott Merryfield

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I fully expected, going into the documentary, to experience music solely from Let It Be, and was really surprised at both the wide variety of music that was covered during the tune-up sessions, and the amount of development with songs that would eventually appear on Abbey Road.
I have only watched the first two parts so far, but this is one of the things that really surprised me, as well. Almost the entire side two of that album (plus Maxwell's Silver Hammer and Oh, Darlin') arose during these sessions. Plus the beginnings of some solo material -- McCartney's Another Day, Harrison's All Things Must Pass, etc. It was really interesting to watch.
 
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Scott Merryfield

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We finished Part 3 the other night. The way the rooftop concert was edited together with the split screens showing what was happening on the streets was fantastic, IMO. My wife and I cracked up at one older woman who was interviewed and complained about being woke up by the loud music. She sounded just like the Monty Python guys when they dressed up as old British women. :laugh:

Another thing that we really had a laugh at was watching Linda Eastman's daughter Heather. The look on her face while she was watching Yoko screeching into the microphone was priceless. Then, a few minutes later, Heather was imitating Yoko. :laugh:
 
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