In the end, “Yesterday” doesn’t quite come together


Courtesy of Ayomi Wolff

Grace Kowal

The plot of Danny Boyle’s “Yesterday” was enticing enough: A 12-second power outage causes everyone in the world to completely forget about The Beatles and all of their songs. Only aspiring musician and main protagonist Jack remembers their music. Once the bewildered Jack finds out the world has never heard of The Beatles, he uses their music to propel himself into fame. His motivations are sweet; he just wants romance and recognition. But by the midpoint of the movie, I found myself disappointed. Yes, the music was great. However, the film relied far too much on everyone’s love for The Beatles and was lacking in some core areas.

Firstly, the acting was extremely inconsistent. While the male lead, Himesh Patel, was believable, I found his love interest, played by Lily James, bland and overacted. It was great seeing Ed Sheeran, and his presence almost made up for how much of a caricature Kate McKinnon’s role as an evil music producer was. Also, James Corden was just flat out annoying, even though he was supposedly playing himself (sorry!). 

Now, let’s talk about the ending. Endings are supposed to leave you sobbing, in awe, or at the very least satisfied. “Yesterday” did not achieve anything close. Instead, we see Jack meet John Lennon (not dead), in a cute little cottage. The two have an odd and irrelevant conversation that did not do Lennon or The Beatles justice. Not to mention the fact that it was more than a little off-putting and tasteless. 

Cheap jokes about bad teeth and Oasis (a band once claiming to be “bigger than The Beatles” that has been wiped from the world’s collective memory) were entertaining enough, but “Yesterday” lacked the oomph of a good movie. It was a fun way to spend two hours, but it wasn’t worth the $15 movie ticket. Beatles fans should expect great renditions of their favorite songs, but amateur acting and unfulfilled potential left me feeling more than a little disappointed. 3 stars.