I hope that title grabbed your attention and went “WHAT!“.
Let me explain. For regular readers of this blog you should know that I have a dirty secret. I meet up with a couple of friends on a Friday night and watch bad movies. One was from 1978 called Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.
The film is thought as the first, of what became known as “Jukebox musicals”. Basically, they take the songs from an artist, or album, and crowbar a “plot” to fit the songs.
This is what they did for Sgt Peppers. However, it’s not just that album they have raided as otherwise the film would only be about an hour long. They padded it out with songs from Abbey Road
What you can say is that the cast can sing. Acting on the other hand… There are some great people in the film. George Burns as Mr Kite. Yes, the person Sgt Pepper does the benefit for. Are you getting some of the plot already?
Steve Martin does a deranged version of Maxwell’s Silver Hammer. This time playing a Cosmetic Surgeon. He would later play an equally deranged Dentist in Little Shop Of Horrors. Not only that, we get Frankie Howerd doing a very stalkerish version of When I’m 64.
The most interesting one from the non-singers has to be George Burns’ version of Fixing A Hole. With 2 young girls as backing singers. What do you think? Just click play on the below video.
We also have Areosmith as the “evil band”. The heroes are the Bee Gees and Peter Frampton! Not only that, we get a great ensemble piece of who was famous in the late 70s. All of them can’t act, even if they don’t need to say anything. The only good thing is that the Bee Gees and Peter can do quite a good drunk. In the same scene we see “synchronised stoning” – 3 waiters smoking cannabis cigarettes in sync.
The cast is quite amazing as you can see with its IMDB entry, as well as who sings what. There are some great cover versions of both the well known, and not as known tracks from The Beatles albums used.
The smell of hairspray and cannabis wafts out of the screen, as much as the nausea that the acting in the film gives you. Fortunately, the only person to speak is George Burns. He gives his lines with the feeling of “it’s a job”. no passion but perfectly passable.
So without this film, we wouldn’t have got Mamma Mia, We Will Rock You, Rock of Ages and a million-and-one others that we have never heard of! Sometimes you could think that that would be a good thing. A world without Mama Mia maybe a slightly better one.