Yesterday Movie Review

by Erik

I’m a Beatles fan. I can’t imagine a world without The Beatles. Their impact is just one of those things you can’t comprehend. They started the British Invasion. They influenced fashion, music, culture, politics. Inspired people around the world. It’s like trying to comprehend a world without Disney or IBM or NASA or Coca-Cola. But Yesterday does just that. And in a big way it’s sad.

Now, I have to admit, I have not watched the whole movie. I actually had to stop because I was getting seriously depressed watching it. I told myself that I’ll finish watching it tonight but in all likelihood, it will probably be Saturday. Okay, definitely Sunday.

SPOILER ALERT. I’m going to discuss the movie, if you don’t want to be spoiled, leave now.


Jack is a struggling musician. He can sing and play, but his original songs aren’t gaining him any traction in his music career. Until one night when the power goes out around the world and he is hit by a bus. And when he wakes up, he is only one of a few people that remember The Beatles (or Coca-Cola). What caused any of this is never explored unfortunately. Of those few people, he is apparently the only musician. So, he begins writing down all The Beatles’s songs. And playing them. And passing them off as his own work. He tries to tell Ellie (his manager/love interest) the truth. Until he is noticed by Ed Sheeran. And I kept watching.

Obviously, this movie is not meant as a great moral lesson. It’s a romantic comedy. It doesn’t explore the ramifications of why no one remembers The Beatles (or Coca-Cola). Jack tamps down the unethical feelings he has about plagiarizing The Beatles. And I kept watching. He jets off to Moscow and performs Back in the USSR, which he “wrote” on the flight, to huge applause. And I kept watching.  Ed Sheeran challenges him to a spontaneous song-writing contest which he wins with “The Long and Winding Road.”

And here is pretty much where I had to stop watching. Yes, I know this was just a movie. But something about watching someone plagiarize one of my favorite songs to beat someone with genuine songwriting ability was just too much. There are a lot of musicians in the world. Some of them are one-hit wonders. Some of them are gifted with the ability to write hit after hit after hit. When Ed Sheeran compared Jack and himself to Mozart and Salieri with a look of complete and utter defeat. I had enough.

Will I finish watching the movie? Yes, of course I will. I don’t not finish watching movies. I will find time to watch it. And I have a feeling that everything will work out in the end. Like I said, this is not meant to be a great Greek Moral tragedy. I hope that Jack will find his way. I hope that Jack will tell the truth and find his way back to Ellie. Yes, I am paraphrasing another movie that started out depressing and ended up being a great movie.

I hope.





Disclaimer: I was provided a free copy of Yesterday for this review. All opinions are my own.

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