Yellow Submarine – 50th anniversary

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To celebrate its 50th anniversary of its original release The Beatles’ animated film Yellow Submarine returned to the big screen in a newly-restored format on Sunday 8th July. Everyone who attended received a bright blue envelope which contained four collector’s cards and a Peppertastic sticker set.

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Never one  of my favourites when growing up, Yellow Submarine has aged rather well. With the exception of George, who looks and sounds strangely cross, the individual Beatles’ character, charm and wit survive their cartoon incarnations. Ringo (voiced by Paul Angelis) is as loveable and funny as ever. I had forgotten that the real Beatles appear fleetingly at the end of the film – always a joy to see them together, though by 1968’s White Album they were effectively writing songs solo.

In glorious surround sound their music sounds wonderful. Lesser known songs such as Only a Northern Song, Hey Bulldog and It’s All Too Much showcase Harrison’s crunchy psychedelic sparkle and McCartney’s magnificent swooping bass lines.

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As the commemorative notes inside the blue envelope have it:

In every age, there are  individuals who capture the spirit of their  time  and speak with the unique voices of their generation. The Beatles  were  four such individuals. And when this spectacular film  debuted in 1968 it was instantly recognisable as a cinematic landmark. It was designed by the brilliant art director Heinz Edelmann and directed by George Dunning, and you will now experience a stunning, newly  restored version of this groundbreaking animation.

Join John, Paul, George  and Ringo on the technicolour  adventure of a lifetime. Illustrated with mind-bending moving images this will be your chance to watch The Beatles battle the music-hating Blue Meanies once again, armed only with the power of love. Filled with messages of peace, love  and hope, the film captured the essence of the ’60s. And integrating the freestyle approach of the era with innovative animation techniques, it helped revolutionise a genre.

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