It was no A Hard Day’s Night, though despite The Beatles Magical Mystery Tour’s monstrous flop and scathing reviews, the Dendy Newtown Cinemas are screening a special remastered edition of the film today and tomorrow (27th and 28th of September).
Released in 1967, the film was following on from the enormous success of the Beatles album Sgt Peppers, a huge hit around the world. In the film, the Beatles take a bus down to the seaside, filled with surreal and bizarre events and characters. But the film was catastrophically slandered by critics and viewers, even by die-hard Beatles enthusiasts.
The band’s producer George Martin blamed the film’s failure on its black and white broadcast. Given that the film was shot in colour, communicating the psychedelic experimentation of the band members and their music, the black and white release on television flattened the experimental project. While Richard Lester directed A Hard Day’s Night (1964), Bernard Knowles directed the poorly received Magical Mystery Tour, and Hard Days has since garnered more success and a greater cult following than Mystery Tour. Yet the film, which features songs such as Fool on the Hill and I am the Walrus– hallmarks of the Beatles’ hallucinogenic and kaleidoscopic era- is still a valued addition to the Beatles anthology. The Dendy Newtown Cinema will show the film remastered and in full colour, with never before seen footage.