Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

With the pacing of a chess match, and the musicality of…a chess match, Sgt. 
Pepper’s 
Lonely Hearts Club Band is a tough slog, even for us, frequent champions of the terrible.

How is it humanly possible to turn great Beatles songs into unlistenable mush? Well, much of the blame lies at the feet of the Bee Gees, which give many of us the heebie- jeebies. Their squeaky voices and generous pompadours are enough to turn stomachs, that’s for sure, but it’s not like there’s not lots of blame to slather around.

They, along with Peter Frampton, are members of a supergroup from which the film’s title is derived. They’re stars of Heartland, USA, a fictional town located in (wait for it) the heartland of the United States. They probably should’ve hailed from Tin Ear, Indiana.

BD Records signs, and then exploits them, but it’s hard to tell who’s exploiting whom. A strong case could be made that when it comes to exploitation, it’s that of the cochlea or auditory nerve.

Filmed mostly around an MGM backlot gazebo that’s probably given a healthy workout during episodes of Gilmore Girls, Sgt. Pepper’s features musical numbers as pedestrian as the town square sidewalks.

Steve Martin mallets his way through Maxwell’s Silver Hammer, Barry Gibb badly warbles A Day in the Life, Billy Preston sashays his way through Get Back…And speaking of getting things back…how ’bout that lengthy run-time?

On the Really Awful Movies Podcast, we have occasionally delved into atrociously bad musicals, discussing films like Xanadu and The Apple. And stinkers though they were,  they were fun and spirited. This one though, yikes. Steer clear.

* (out of 5)

[Tune in to our Really Awful Movies Podcast discussion of Sgt. Peppers!]

 

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