Living in the Material World is the new 2011 Documentary by Martin Scorsese about the life and music of George Harrison. Upon leaving The Beatles in 1970, he went on to have a very successful solo career.
Inter-cut with archive material, friends, family and associates of the musician tell the story of his life and how spirituality became such a major part of it it’s a really well put together piece – it basically covers every facet of Harrison’s life in great detail – there’s hardly any aspect of his career that’s not mentioned.
The film starts off brilliantly with pictures of 1940s wartime with the soundtrack of All Things Must Pass. It’s a great start and sets the scene of what’s to come. There’s also some really cool, previously unseen footage of Harrison and McCartney signing the legal papers (looks like circa ’71 judging by McCartney’s hair) and there’s also a film of the early Beatles gigging at some sort of church hall (circa ’59).
The Beatles years are dealt with brilliantly – great insights from Kircherr and Voorman about the Hamburg days and the film skips nicely along through ’63 – ’67 inter-cut with great interviews and music. The ’67 – ’70 years are also dealt with really well, dealing with Pepper, White Album and the eventual breakup. Some of McCartney and Starr’s interviews are really insightful.
The post Beatles years are dealt with in detail – from All Things Must Pass, the Concert for Bangladesh, Dark Horse tour, Life of Brian, Wilbury’s and so on. The last twenty minutes or so is perhaps the best – it manages to eclipse Harrison’s final years really well with some emotional words from those closest to him.
There’s some nice touches – Scorsese has the habit of playing a Harrison tune and then cutting it short when you least expect it. The other contributions are also fantastic – Clapton, Idle, Martin, Petty and Jackie Stewart, to name a few.
This year marks the 10th anniversary of his death.
Watch George Harrison – Living in a Material World – pt 1of2
Watch George Harrison – Living in a Material World – pt 2of2 http://vimeo.com/60379367
Living in the Material World,