How a Great Beatles Song Is Reborn in ‘Yesterday’

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Ready to hear a stripped-down rendition of the classic ballad “Leave It Be”?

The misnaming of the popular Beatles song is one of the bits of fun the director Danny Boyle has in this scene from “Yesterday.” The plot involves a worldwide blackout that has erased the songs of the Fab Four from collective memory. But Jack Malik (Himesh Patel) remembers them, and winds up using them as his own to become a star.

It doesn’t start out well in this sequence where he plays “Let It Be” for his parents and a variety of distractions prevents them from catching on to its greatness. Meera Syal and Sanjeev Bhaskar play the couple hoping their son would give up on his dead-end music dreams.

In his narration, Boyle discusses why he chose an ordinary home to birth the song, and how he let his performers improvise to help create the comedy of the scene.

Read our “Yesterday” review.

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Mekado Murphy is a senior staff editor with a focus on movies coverage. He joined The Times in 2006. @mekadomurphy

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