The Compleat Beatles
||This article contains too many or too-lengthy quotations for an encyclopedic entry. (February 2014)|
|The Compleat Beatles|
|Directed by||Patrick Montgomery|
|Produced by||Patrick Montgomery,
|Written by||David Silver|
Billy J. Kramer
|Narrated by||Malcolm McDowell|
|Music by||The Beatles|
|Release date(s)||May 28, 1982|
|Running time||119 min.|
The Compleat Beatles, released in 1982, is a two-hour documentary, chronicling the career of the the Beatles. Although it has since been supplanted by the longer and more in-depth documentary Beatles Anthology, The Compleat Beatles was for many years largely regarded as the definitive film about the Beatles. The word "compleat" is a tongue-in-cheek reference to the intentional misspelling of "Beetles".
Narrated by actor Malcolm McDowell, it includes extensive interviews with a number of sources close to the Beatles. Some of the people interviewed are producer George Martin, their first manager Allan Williams, Cavern Club DJ Bob Wooler, music writer Bill Harry, and musicians Gerry Marsden, Billy J. Kramer, Marianne Faithfull, Billy Preston and Tony Sheridan. The film also includes archival footage of interviews with members of the Beatles and their manager Brian Epstein. Authors Nicholas Schaffner and Wilfred Mellers are among the commentators who offer their views on the band's career. The Compleat Beatles also features early concert footage, behind-the-scenes background on the making of their albums, and candid footage of their often obsessed, hysterical fans.
Quotations from the film
“They generally wrote their own songs…they would play them, one to the other…It was very much a competition, and a very healthy one.”—George Martin
Narration in the film
These are extracts from the narration in the film - read (but not written) by Malcolm McDowell.
"Millions bought the Sgt. Pepper album. Critics and musicians everywhere praised it. It was the Beatles' masterpiece."
"Magical Mystery Tour…was their first venture following Brian’s death. Largely a project of Paul’s, the idea was to travel the English countryside in a bus filled with friends, actors and circus freaks, and to film whatever happened. Unfortunately, nothing did."
"It had to be stoically accepted that the Beatles were, in the end, a phenomenon of the sixties; the seventies, and beyond, were only to feel their influence."
"“Hey Jude” was their first release from the newly formed Apple Corps. The song was seven minutes long, double the length of most singles. Radio stations usually refused to play a song that lasted more than three, but once again the Beatles were the exception to the rule. “Hey Jude” became the Beatles’ largest-selling single of all."
"Over the last 18 months, John, George, and Ringo had all privately threatened to quit, only to be coaxed back by Paul. Now it was Paul's turn. The release of his solo album, McCartney, on April 17, 1970 made it official. The Beatles, the greatest pop group of all time, were no more."