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Film Review: 50th Anniversary Release of The Beatles A Hard Day’s Night

The Beatles A Hard Day's NightAlthough The Beatles may have broken up decades ago, true fans know that Beatlemania still lives in their hearts and minds. Whenever one of their songs comes on the radio, whether you’re 16 or 60, you can’t help but sing along.

Now audiences can sing along with John, Paul, George, and Ringo as they return to the big screen in what is now considered both a Beatles’ and cinema classic.

Digitally restored into 4K resolution from original film negatives and featuring a 5.1 surround mix from original Beatles tapes stored at Abbey Road and Capitol Records, A Hard Day’s Night returns to theaters July 4th in celebration of its 50th anniversary. Directed by legendary filmmaker Richard Lester—who approved the final result of the restoration undertaken by the Criterion Collection—and written by Alun Owen, the film follows the fab four as they play wily, exuberant versions of themselves that has become synonymous with their image.

As many fans will remember, A Hard Day’s Night captures the astonishing moment when the Beatles officially became the singular, irreverent idols of their generation and changed music forever. Directed with raucous, anything-goes verve by Richard Lester and featuring a slew of their iconic pop anthems, including the title track, “Can’t Buy Me Love,” “I Should Have Known Better,” and “If I Fell,” A Hard Day’s Night is credited with changing the movie musical and exerting an incalculable influence on the music video. Many consider it one of the most deliriously entertaining movies of all time.

The painstaking restoration process for both the picture and sound has definitely yielded worthwhile results. Visually stunning, the work done by the Criterion Collection to digitize the footage into 4K resolution preserves the beauty of the original black and white film. Images were scanned to retain the character of the film’s original printing stock and digital tools were used to remove dirt, scratches, flicker, or any other signs of damages. Fans who saw the movie in its original theatrical run will marvel while a new generation will have an opportunity to appreciate Lester’s filmmaking and the Beatles.

And most importantly, the sound is astounding. The work done by Giles Martin and Sam Okell to mix the music to 5.1 surround and restore it to stereo quality makes an audience member feel as if John, Paul, George, and Ringo are performing right in front of you.

A Hard Day’s Night will be in limited release nationwide from Friday, July 4th to Thursday, July 10th in select theaters across the country. Anyone in the Los Angeles area can see the film at Cinefamily. For a comprehensive list of cities and theaters screening the film, you can find it here.

The Beatles A Hard Day’s Night Re-Release Trailer:

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Aaron Zamora

Aaron grew up in Whittier, California and is currently finishing his master's degree in Human Communication studies from California State University, Fullerton. His interest in journalism began in high school where he served as the Editor-in-Chief for his school’s newspaper and participated in their inaugural broadcast journalism program. An avid world traveler, Aaron has a wide array of interest that include a passion for cinema and television. He is also a sports fanatic.

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