IMAX Get Back rooftop review
Okay, this is not so much a review as a complaint about a totally missed opportunity and Disney’s lack of market research.
I watched the rooftop concert in an IMAX theatre here in Oslo, Norway last night and I have to confess, I was not impressed by the film. Straight off the final chapter of the TV series, just on a bigger screen and Giles Martin and Sam Okell have mixed it for IMAX by adding fake echo when we saw shots taken from the rooftop across the street and the music played second fiddle when the police or street audience was in focus. That’s very close to sacrilege, it’s THE BEATLES we are talking about! And their MUSIC – which should have taken priority over everything else.
It should have been a concert film, but it’s not.
But now that the full or close to full audio is out there, no doubt video bootleggers will match that soundtrack with footage from the rooftop and no street scenes or police interference. A missed opportunity for The Beatles/Apple/Disney.
Unless of course, this will become an option on a future release of Michael Lindsay-Hogg’s original “Let It Be” film.
Oh, by the way: they didn’t show Peter Jackson’s Q&A session from January 30th, but a YouTube uploader has part of it here.
I saw it in the US on January 30. I was also under the impression that was an exclusive edit of just the concert footage, but it is not. The street interview clips are still there, but at least in the IMAX audio mix, the concert audio is much louder under the interviews, so it’s a little less of an interruption. I am also hoping there is a “no interview” choice on the DVD!
That’s it?!? The whole mystique about the roof top show is the cops shutting them down and how good the Beatles played up there. The element of the hidden camera, the interaction slight of hand of the doorman and the receptionist that allows for the concert to continue as long as it does is what makes it a great film. Now, on Apple Music you can hear it totally uninterrupted and it’s fantastic. When Let it be coms out with the bonus interviews and full performances it will come full circle for you. The IMAX audio was terrific.
Unfortunately, my local IMAX didn’t turn up the volume enough to make me appreciate a concert level sound. But I’m not blaming Martin or Okell for that. I heard it was louder in Copenhagen 😉
Ask for your money back, seriously. The IMAX sound I heard was genuinely worth the price of admission alone
Oh great just what I want to hear am going to see it Sat. Oh well will have to judge for myself.
Thanks, Roger. Off to see it tonight at the London IMAX (just £10 this time, rather than £40), but feeling duly forewarned to expect the same niggly interruptions as we saw in Part Three…
As you rightly say, it’s a wasted opportunity – given the improved sound and the IMAX screen, we could have fancied ourselves to be “at the gig” if we didn’t have to keep popping down to street level to watch the rozzers bumbling about, and to listen to Joe/Joan Public giving his/her tuppenyworth!
You can hear the whole concert, uninterrupted on Apple Music? I was under the impression streaming services, Apple Music, Spotify…, paid the artist very little, unless you are Drake, The Weekend, or somebody getting hundreds of millions of listens.
Strreaming alone would not support releases of box sets, alt packages or re-releases. The artists only get paid when a track is listened to. Take the Let it Be box set. I’ve only listened to it once all the way through. I’ll listen to it more in the future and will buy any box set the Beatles/Solo Beatles put out.
But why are the Beatles encouraging streaming over physical media? It don’t make sense.
Look at it this way: you bought a boxset you’ve only listened to once. Most people will only stream this material a similar number of times, but that will generate some money. And if a physical release comes along, those people will still buy it, listen to it a similar number of times, and put it on the shelf. But that will also generate money. So they’ve made money from the same people twice. For material like this it won’t work the other way around. It’s for much the same reason that they don’t release films on DVD or blu ray before the cinema release. However much people want to hear the full rooftop concert, very few people are going to keep listening to it over and over.
Maybe so. But if I ever pull the trigger in streaming music, buying physical media will be a thing of the past.
You are so right. For example, here you have John Lennon in one of the few recorded concerts of him ever (outside of Beatlemania) belting out Don’t Let Me Down and we’re shifting audio to the police in the reception area. The whole group was really rocking — sounded so tight — I don’t care to hear someone on the street say “yeah, its the Beatles”. Not just a missed opportunity but a huge disappointment. And hearing the so-called “Beatle fan” director tell us the brilliance of it? Frankly that’s in the original Let it Be movie too, right?
I’m seeing it this Sat. so this really isn’t something that I wanted to hear. But will judge for myself.
The fake added reverb was also present on the Disney+ streaming version. I noticed that the sound overall was nothing special..wasn’t gearing much from the rear channels at all during the IMAX screening
I have to laugh at people complaining about this edit and the lack of bonus material on the forthcoming dvd. Its obvious that there is only a limited supply of ‘new’ Beatles material available to Apple so it’s in their interest to drag out its release over many years. No doubt it will all be released one day but not until they have milked it for all it’s worth. Expect numerous release versions in the future. I’m sure the full concert will be available one day, but you can guarantee the super duper deluxe 100th anniversary version with added 3 seconds of sound will eventually be all they have left to issue.
There’s a “limited supply of new Beatles material” you say…but you could release a double album of material from the Let it Be sessions –
eg Palace of the Kings of Birds
Give me Some Truth – this recording doesn’t have to be perfect…were all the recordings put on the Anthology series perfect?
fast version of Two of Us
She Came in Thru The Window (with Lennon saying “get a job, cop” etc.
Paul running thru the old number Woman with dialogue either side
New Orleans….I loved just that small snippet…the excitement there was great in that 30 second snippet.
Buddy Holly covers such as Maybe Baby etc.
Greasepaint on your Face
rock version of Get Back
We’ve seen a couple of bootleg Blu-rays of the series. One has the following bonus material: “60 minutes” segment about the series, “60 minutes overtime” online content, Get Back interview with Peter Jackson from “Variety’s Doc Dreams” and the documentary “The Beatles, Get Back and London: On the trail of a timeless story”. The other bootleg Blu-ray has these promos (music videos) as bonus material: “Get Back”, “Don’t Let Me Down”, “One After 909”, “Let It Be” and “The Long and Winding Road”. All in full length and uninterrupted, which wasn’t the case in the documentary series. The bootleg also contains the following: “Peter Jackson’s Sneak Peek”, Official trailer, “Making of…” featurette, “Get Back” in Basement, “Don’t Let Me Down” in Basement, “Something” rehearsal clip and the “Part one now streaming” ad.
Having watched “The Rooftop Concert” (an interesting titular change from the streaming audio version) yesterday evening at the London IMAX, I must admit that my original, sceptical view about this presentation has changed somewhat.
This is probably because my girlfriend was with me, and so I was watching it – at least in part – from her neutral perspective. Like many there, she loved the bumbling rozzers and the “vox pop” interpolations – indeed, without those “extras”, watching the Beatles repeating a bunch of songs would probably have become slightly dull for the casual observer.
Of course, many of those who frequent this blog are not “casual observers”, and like most of them, I very much hope that it will be possible for a complete video version to be created (officially or otherwise) which excludes everything other than the performance itself, but I’m happy to say that what we saw, with the enormous screen and great sound (although hardly “surround sound” – Giles really doesn’t get that, does he?), was still hugely entertaining, and well worth the price of admission. And they even had a supply of left-over posters from the original screening to hand out afterwards, which was nice…
I still can’t quite believe that we finally had the chance to watch all this footage in pristine quality after so many years of waiting, so let’s be grateful to all concerned for that! Now we just need “Let It Be” the movie so that we can watch the final day properly – it still looks very odd to see the definitive takes of three key songs being tacked on over the credits in Peter Jackson’s version, as good as the rest of it is.
Glad to hear you saw and enjoyed it Brian. Personally, I think the vox pops are great and well worth including just to see the mix of the people on the street and the payoff line of ‘they get around, don’t they?’.
I saw the IMAX cut last night at the Cineplex Scotiabank Theatre Toronto and was very pleased overall. The sound mix was fantastic with chest thumping bass almost as powerful as a live performance.
(This is my first time commenting but I’m a frequent reader of the blog.)
Just saw it in Alexandria, VA, and was blown away by the presentation. I appreciated that the IMAX mix kept the music louder during the interview segments.
I just saw it and liked it. Especially the part with the English Boobies. They were just young kids anf might have been fans themselves.
Those are “bobbies”, not “boobies” – that would make it a very different type of film!
Oops didn’t realize that at the time. Thanks for corrected it. Gotta be more careful in the future.
Going into the IMAX showing my preference was for something fresh – a unique edit of just the performance without the cutaways. My mind has utterly changed however. Yes, I do definitely want to see an uninterrupted, unadorned edit but, as a cinematic experience, you NEED to have the narrative drive that the band v audience v police contrasts give. That elicited the expected laughs and whoops (yes actual whoops) from the IMAX audience. It’s entirely right to do so and makes for a real cineaste experience. This ALSO provides genuine purpose for a separate Let it Be release – official movie, official full song performance of TOU, TLAWR & LIB. And – a full performance of the rooftop without the multi-angle presentation.
Do you get the impression from Peter that all of his cleaned up footage belongs to Disney and that a new Let it Be release will have the cleaned up footage that it had already. I have a boot of Let it Be and it looks pretty good, but not Peter Jackson good.
I saw it on Friday night at the Scotiabank Theatre in Toronto and I was very pleased. The volume was loud with chest-thumping bass really putting the IMAX sound system to work.
Saw it last night at my local Odeon in England. It was everything I hoped it would be, I thought it was fantastic!
PS Roger…thanks for producing such a great website.