Well, well, another anniversary.
Yes, I know, there’s always another anniversary brewing but I think this one is pretty fun.
Fifty-four years ago today The Beatles’ first film entitled “A Hard Day’s Night” had it’s premiere in theaters at the London Pavilion in front of thousands of screaming fans outside and none other then members of the royal family attending inside.
To say this film was influential is an understatement. Not only is it the best film made by
The Beatles, it’s also one of the best films made about music PERIOD!
Naysayers at the time were won over by the cheeky, down to earth and lovable “mop-tops” as The Beatles became known and to this day this film is still critically revered and a joy to watch.
And seeing as how this blog is about the joys of physical media, I thought it might be fun to take a look at three ancient (at least it seems that way now) ways of watching “A Hard Day’s Night” from the not so distant past – the first VHS Tape home video issue plus two CD-ROM’s (one Macintosh and one Windows).
The first time I was able to get a really good look at “A Hard Day’s Night” was its original VHS Tape issue from 1984.
I remember ordering it from one of the local video rental stores and as I vividly recall it sure wasn’t cheap! It was somewhere around $80 or more and remarkably enough I managed to scrap up enough to buy it and anxiously awaited its release.
Talking the tape out now to take photos I forgot that it was even labeled as first issue right on the silver label of the tape. It was also copied onto Maxell brand tape and looks very well made, much better than other tapes at time as I recall.
Of course the picture isn’t up to the latest issue on DVD or Blu-Ray but this release looks pretty good and sounds great still. It was a revelation to finally be able to pop this film in anytime I wanted to and see it uncut in all it’s glory!
(Note: In those days “A Hard Day’s Night” was rarely shown on television or cable so being able to own it was one of the only ways of getting to see it.)
Of course I have always loved the film but I had originally seen The Beatles second film “Help!” first and it took me a while to really fall head over heels for “A Hard Day’s Night” as “Help!” seemed much more akin to The Monkees TV show of which I was and am a big fan.
Nowadays I’d say I’m much more a fan of “A Hard Day’s Night” because it really does capture The Beatles and Beatlemania so perfectly and it stands out as the best film work The Beatles ever did.
Cut to 1993 and the Voyager company’s CD-ROM issues of “A Hard Day’s Night” in both Macintosh and Windows format.
It’s been ages since I’ve popped these babies into a computer but as I remember you could watch the entire film as well as view the entire shooting script among other goodies.
Of course you had to have decent memory on your computer as I recall the film getting hung up quite often as I didn’t have a state of the art computer at the time but nevertheless I remember enjoying these CD-ROMs but they were no match for seeing the film as it exists today on Blu-Ray.
I just thought it might be fun to take a gander at photos of these artifacts from the past (above) and take a moment to celebrate one of my all-time favorite films (and groups!) and take a quick journey backward.
Makes me want to take out my “A Hard Day’s Night” Blu-Ray and give it a spin.
Until next time, enjoy the summer sun and be well!!!