Yellow Submarine Review
Yellow Submarine is a 1968 animated musical fantasy film directed by George Dunning and incorporating the music of the Beatles. It is regarded as one of the best animated films of all time, but I find it to be overrated.
The plot is the reason why this movie is troublesome. This is a typical psychedelic and drug-fueled movie and I have never been a fan of those. And the story is problematic because at first it seems that it is non-existent, but later turns out that the film does have it. But it is never that interesting to watch, albeit it does have a couple of really intriguing scenes with the time travel sequence being quite interesting. But the overall movie is boring despite its short running time and it barely held my attention.
The characters are also pretty underdeveloped. I am also not a fan of the Beatles which is why this movie isn’t for me, but they didn’t make them particularly likable or that interesting. They have a nice interaction as a group, but something is always missing in those scenes because the character development is pretty poor. But the acting is admittedly really good and those actors that played the Beatles got them right as they sounded and behaved like them.
Now, the animation. Yellow Submarine has a gorgeous animation and that is most certainly its biggest strength. It is psychedelic and weird, but is mostly really well crafted and often artistic as well. It is too colorful at times to the point of being garish which was frustrating to watch, but for the most part the film does look splendid and very imaginative.
Yes, the world building is absolutely phenomenal here. Everything is really well imagined and realized from the creatures to the landscapes to the mythology of the world. The movie is worth seeing just for that world building and of course great animation. The pacing is poor, but the score is good and the film is well made.
Yellow Submarine has a solid soundtrack. All Together Now is fine, Only a Northern Song is also solid and Nowhere Man is one of the best songs here. All You Need Is Love is naturally very good, but the highlight for me definitely has to be Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds which is the very best song here, so catchy and fun. And Yellow Submarine is also so catchy and entertaining. The songs are pretty good, but not as great as they should have been.
The imagery is cool, but the movie sometimes tries too hard to be the next ‘Fantasia’ which is mostly evident in some forced and pretentious sequences. The whole film is definitely too pretentious. I liked some really interesting parts, but for the most part the screenplay isn’t that great. The dialogue is pretty good, but there should have been more of it. And the use of Blue Meanies is problematic. They have their moments and are interesting in design, but are not as interesting or as unique as the movie makes them out to be. The whole movie isn’t as sophisticated as it seems to be and although definitely artistic at times, it is mostly pretentious. It is ‘Fantasia‘ with the Beatles songs, that is the best way I would describe this movie. And while it’s certainly interesting and definitely solid, it is far from a great movie and its quality is honestly exaggerated.