If you were one of the thousands of Minnesotans who enjoyed the return of The Lion King musical, consider taking another look—or a first look—at Across the Universe. The 2007 movie is a tour through the Beatles’ song catalog directed by Julie Taymor, the visionary who turned The Lion King from a cartoon to an IRL stunner.
The film earned mixed reviews when it opened: some thought it was overblown, some thought it was corny, and others simply thought the Beatles songs were best left to the Beatles. But I was impressed enough to see it twice in theaters, and to watch it again recently on video. To my eye, the film is a magical mystery ride of visual wonders cleverly tucked into the form of a meta-narrative that captures the spirit of the 60s, fueled by the brilliant musical arrangements of T Bone Burnett—a producer best known for masterminding the O Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack. If your home theater (or your suburban relative’s) has been waiting for a workout, give Across the Universe a spin. Chemical enhancement is optional.