ROGER THOMAS FILM REVIEW: ‘Yesterday’ — a film to see today

Published 9:37 am Wednesday, July 10, 2019

“Yesterday” is a hard film to describe.

Is it a fantasy?

Yes, one has to believe that.

Roger Thomas

Is it a comedy?

Yes, there are elements of amusement.

Is it a love story?

Yes. There is love throughout the film in many forms.

Is it a drama?

Occasionally, especially toward the end.

And it is a story about life, choices, and the alternatives that appear in our lives along the way.

It is simply a film that I have not stopped pondering since I first saw it. That is a major compliment for any film, when I keep a film rolling around in my head and between my ears for a week.

Now, I need to offer a weakness so my readers do not think this is a perfect film. I personally think the middle section of the film lags a little bit. That part of the story could have been trimmed because it seems repetitive. Meetings and conversations happen too often and I wanted more from the film during that middle section.

On the other hand, I would not want the filmmakers to cut the wonderful music from The Beatles.

It is played sometimes constantly and who does not like The Beatles?

Whoever does not like The Beatles will probably not like the film — and that will be a shame.

Recently we have had several films based on musical groups and musicians: “Rocketman,” “A Star Is Born” “Bohemian Rhapsody” and now “Yesterday.”

I hope filmmakers can continue such high quality films that are about the brilliant crafts of music-making.

As for the rest of the film, you already know that I like “Yesterday.”

The film starts simply. I cannot define what was supposed to happen, but the world goes black and our planet changes.

After that, no one knows or remembers The Beatles and their wonderful songs.

Nobody, except one man who was in the hospital during the anomaly, remembers about the songs.The man decides he can claim The Beatles’ wonderful music for his own.

All this builds up to the lead character realizing no one knows about the songs and that is quite fun.

All the humor in the film is grand.

Himesh Patel plays the lead role of Jack. Jack is a musician who would like to be successful, but he is just not finding success. At least not until the strange blackout in his life.

“Yesterday” is directed by Danny Boyle who won an Oscar for directing the outstanding film “Slumdog Millionaire” in 2008.

“Yesterday” does not quite carry the punch that “Slumdog Millionaire” did, but the two films are in different genres. “Slumdog Millionaire” had humor but also tragedy and hardship throughout the film.

As I said above, “Yesterday” was light in the beginning, slowed in the middle and then embraced a revelation.

I saw the film with no one I knew. I was almost tempted to ask the strangers around me if they felt what I felt when the climax was revealed. Those strangers probably would have not appreciated my outburst, so I did not try.

But one day soon when “Yesterday” is on DVD, I want to have my friends over and discuss one of the best scenes of any film this year so far.

Whoever came up with that plot should be commended as a true film craftsman.

“Yesterday” is a hard film to describe. Once again, when the puzzle of this film unfolds, it will be worth the viewing absolutely and completely.

Roger W. Thomas of Albemarle reviews films for The Stanly News & Press.