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Help! [Blu-ray] 
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In this second feature film starring the Beatles, Ringo purchases an unusual ring which marks him as the sacrificial victim of an obscure Eastern cult. The cult members, Clang (Leo McKern) and Ahme (Eleanor Bron), attempt to capture him and the chase is on. Strings of sight gags, one-liners and musical numbers boost the storyline.
After the world-wide success of A Hard Day's Night, the Beatles and director Richard Lester reunited for a follow-up film, Eight Arms to Hold You. Well, that wasn't the final title; a pleading Lennon-McCartney tune provided the catchier handle: Help! A loose semi-spoof of the globe-trotting James Bond pictures, Help! has always been considered a somewhat disorganised comedown from its predecessor; but it presents "the famous Beatles" even more clearly as the English cousins of the Marx Brothers. The plot has an Eastern religious cult declaring that the new ring on Ringo's finger is the key element in a human sacrifice; they will stop at nothing to obtain it. Meanwhile, a mad scientist (crazed Victor Spinetti, who also appeared in A Hard Day's Night and Magical Mystery Tour) believes that if he has the ring, he could--dare we say it?--rule the world. The songs, including "Ticket to Ride" and "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away", are filmed with gleeful ingenuity, in locations such as the Bahamas, an Austrian ski resort and Salisbury Plain. The relentless nonsense becomes nearly the equivalent of a swinging-60s Alice in Wonderland: for instance, Paul shrinks to the size of a gum wrapper, John fishes a season ticket out of his soup, George wears a top hat on the ski slopes, the lads sing the "Ode to Joy" to a lion. Oh, and the film is dedicated to Elias Howe, "who in 1846 invented the sewing machine". Brilliant. --Robert Horton --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
possible for the many.
'The Beatles' were of course - the ultimate 'Pop Group'
as in this film the music during the early years was fresh and
uncomplicated, very commercial and loved by all ( well most )
the story line....'Ringo' wearing a sacrificial ring he'd found
and finding himself hunted by those that wanted it back, trouble
being.....he can't get it off to give it back.
It'll make ya' smile now and then for sure......the bonus......of
course is the music itself - it's great.
with songs such as the title track....'Help' a number one, also
'A Ticket to Ride' also a number one, along with enjoyable numbers
such as....'The night before' .....'You've got to hide your love away'
....'I need you' ....'You're going to lose that girl' ...'Another girl'
the seven songs release on side one of the 'Help' album. ( 1965 )
a little tale ... I was lucky enough to see many, many pop idols of
the day on stage live.......however, how many people do you know
that actually turned down the opportunity to see the fab-four perform
a good friend back then had secured tickets to see 'The Beatles' at
a venue around 40 miles away.......great opportunity.
must have been around mid 1963, the group would have been three hits
into their golden career....'Beatle Mania' had already taken hold, in
fact probably the most talked about subject of the time.
though I quite liked their songs released up to that time I wasn't
hooked to be honest.........I didn't take up the chance to see them,
a decision I've had to live with ever since....what an idiot ...eh ?
by the time their fourth and fifth singles charted 'She Loves You' then
'I want to hold your hand' I had woken up, realizing just how good the music
The Music, truly 'Magic'
the memories will come flooding back.
The film itself hardly needs much comment from me - intended for a different audience in a different age it is now quite dated and rather non-PC, but it does still have some genuinely funny moments! What you buy HELP! for is the music - treat it like a collection of Beatles videos and you won't be disappointed! Some great, timeless music and the audio restoration is worth hearing.
Unless you are a Beatles completist you probably don't need this Blu-ray version if you already have the 2007 DVD release; if not then get this new version - if you have a Blu-ray player of course! Amazon has currently grouped reviews for different versions of HELP! with this release - any review dated before June 2013 will refer to an earlier release so check the date before assuming the review refers to this Blu-ray version! It's the Beatles- it's HELP! - so how could I give it less than five stars? Even if you only watch the whole film once - play the music often. Enjoy it!
Help arrives on blu ray with MPEG-4 AVC 1080p 1.67:1 encode. Help first appeared on DVD in 2000 as part of a 4 disc set, including also Magic Mystery Tour, The First US Visit and You Can’t Do That! The video underwent a complete restoration in 2007 of the Special Edition DVD release. The contents of the current blu ray set are exactly the same as the 2007 Special Edition, with the same Special Features, same booklet containing the same pictures and essays (except the blu ray set is smaller in size). There is little to no information about any further restoration for this HD release. Therefore, I assume that this HD video is from an older master from 2007, as evidenced by a few niggling anomalies, the worst of which is quasi-ringing that may in fact at times simply be light roll off in a couple of backlit scenes, problems that might have been better addressed with newer technology or a higher resolution scan. That said, this blu ray offers some absolutely stunningly saturated colors (wait until you see the blue Ringo wears in an early scene in the lads' home). Fine detail is exceptional in extreme close-ups (take a gander at the first screenshot, where the fine hair on George's nose is easily visible). The final result is that this is the best video presentation of Help to date. (4/5)
The audio is where Help really shines, jumping from the original mono track in 2000 to DTS 5.1 in 2007, and now lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio. There are many great songs in this soundtrack, including Help, You’re Going To Lose That Girl, You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away, Ticket To Ride, The Night Before, I Need You and Another Girl. This is the only place that you can thoroughly enjoy the music in fantastic lossless 5.1 surround sound. The enjoyment is simply sublime. Fidelity in both music and dialogue is excellent. Dynamic range is also wide and nuanced. The ultimate Beatles sound has finally arrived. (5/5)
This blu ray set is identical in look and content to its 2007 counterpart, except smaller in size. The 16-page booklet now comes with shiny glossy papers.
Seeing the Fab Four in bright living colour is a real treat. But the ultimate treat is the lossless 5.1 soundtrack, with so many great songs that we all know by heart. As Martin Scorsese stated in his essay: “The soundtrack of the movie, the soundtrack of our lives. Our memory. Of a time, a sense of possibility. That will never die.” Well put. Help with the current lower price is highly recommended.
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