Overpowering a Vision

Across the Universe is a movie that takes place in the 60s in the midst of the Vietnam War and the Civil Rights Movement. Julie Taymour took the music of the Beatles and created a political musical that depicts the hardships of the country as well as the hardships of romance, with sex, drugs, and protests mixed in. The movie starts off with the main character Jude, who travels to America in search of his dad. He makes a friend, Max, who shows him the ins and outs of the American lifestyle. Max and Jude decide to move to New York city. Max’s sister, Lucy, moves with them to New York and falls for Jude. When Max gets drafted into the military, Lucy takes an anti-war stance and begins to protest it. As Lucy’s political views get more and more extreme, her relationship with Jude suffers. In a violent protest, Jude tries to defend Lucy and is arrested. He then is deported. After several depressing months, Max gets injured and leaves the war and Jude returns to America. Jude professes his love for Lucy on a rooftop and the two live happily ever after.
Julie Taymour centered the plot around Beatles songs. Her attempt to incorporate as many songs as possible hurt the storyline, because she focused more on the music instead of the plot. Taymour failed to develop certain characters which added confusion and disappointment. Taymour also added random songs that did not improve the storyline or move the movie forward. She struggled to balance the music of the Beatles and the storyline of the movie. She let the music overpower the message she was trying to convey in the movie. Taymour could have made a perfect, original movie, but instead focused too much on the epic music of the Beatles and neglected her vision.

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3 thoughts on “Overpowering a Vision

  1. Although i love the movie, i have to agree. There were definitely a few unnecasary song’s that were put into the flick just to show a larger variety of the song’s. In some cases it was as if characters just dropped out of the movie. Prudince’s character actually dropped off even though she had a few song’s just to herself. I feel if Taymour focused more on the character’s development instead of just throwing as many song’s as possible into the musical, the film would have been much easier to understand!

  2. I agree with your point in how the director tried to implement a lot of music. However, I believe that she willingly focused more on the music and less on the storyline of the film. To me, metaphorically describes the time period of the film. It reflects how there was so much going on during the war that people are not able to focus on their own relationships.

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