Went to see the new movie about young John Lennon yesterday. It’s surprisingly moving, even (I would think) to people who don’t already know the back story. But it’s primarily a film for the fans.
Aaron Johnson does an amazing job as the young not-yet-Beatle; so many subtle bits of Lennon mannerisms — his wit, his sarcasm, the occasional brilliant insight –pervade a haunting performance.
Kristin Scott Thomas plays the inestimable Aunt Mimi, and Anne-Marie Duff his legendary mother Julia, . And this, of course, is the problem. How much of the movie is carried along by how much we already know about the triangle between John and his two mother figures? (I don’t know that I would have liked it as much if it was a movie about Fred Jones.)
The movie implies that Julia was bipolar, which is probably as good a way as any to explain her erratic, inappropriate behavior with the teenaged son she’d given up years before.
Anyway, if you’re a Beatles fan, I highly recommend it. If you’re not, you probably won’t like it as much — but you won’t want to walk out, either.
(Before I forget: The movie was funded with a UK Film Council Grant. Imagine, they support artists in other countries! Damn Communists.)