The Beatles Emotional Encore: Peter Jackson’s “Now and Then” Video Conjures Magic from the Archives
Step into a digital reunion of The Beatles, masterfully crafted in Peter Jackson’s latest visual marvel, the “Now and Then” video. As the sun rose on a serene Friday morning, the 3rd of November, the world was gifted with a treasure trove of never-before-seen archival footage, setting the scene for the last track to unite the Fab Four in harmonic nostalgia.
In a world where the melody of The Beatles still echoes, fans had a day to let the poignant strains of “Now and Then” – the final ballad featuring Lennon, McCartney, Harrison and Starr – wash over them. When the day broke, Peter Jackson – directed a a high-tech homage video to the beloved Liverpool quartet, cascaded onto screens, wrapping viewers in a quilt of sentimental remembrance.
Spanning a heartfelt four and a half minutes, the video springs to life with the familiar sound of a guitar tuning and the cinematic click of a cassette entering its player. The heartbeat of the band, Ringo Starr (anchors the rhythm behind his drum set), while Paul McCartney (the bassist with a voice that touched souls) primes his instrument. With the press of a button, we’re whisked away to a 1995 recording session, where the threads of past and present intertwine as McCartney, Starr and the late George Harrison breathe life into a forgotten John Lennon demo.
As Lennon’s haunting voice unfurls, Jackson weaves a visual sonnet, contrasting a reflective Lennon against the backdrop of a setting sun with jubilant yesteryears of The Beatles in their heyday. The video is not just a viewing experience – it’s a heartwarming pilgrimage through time, juxtaposing a modern McCartney in the studio with the spectral image of Lennon, in a celestial stare across time and space.
Jackson’s pre-release statement teased a journey of poignant reflection and subtle humor. True to his word, the video dances between then-and-now snapshots, entwining the youthful exuberance of The Beatles with a sequence sure to spark conversations – archival images of Lennon and Harrison are delicately merged with present-day McCartney and Starr in an almost ethereal collaboration.
The anthem “Now and Then” represents the quartet’s final lyrical partnership, completed by McCartney and Starr decades later, symbolizing the enduring creative spirit that defined them. Peter Jackson, renowned for his cinematic wizardry, rekindles the essence of The Beatles, juxtaposing youthful energy with timeless legacy, and sprinkling it with intimate, never-seen glimpses of the icons as children and global sensations.
In a gripping backstory, Jackson recounts his initial fear of lacking footage to honor Lennon’s original home recording and the subsequent relief when McCartney, Starr and the custodians at Beatles’ Apple Corps delivered over 14 hours of precious 1995 session films. With contributions from Lennon’s son Sean, Harrison’s family and even Pete Best with early band performances, the video became a mosaic of memories.
Accompanying this visual masterpiece is a 12-minute documentary, “Now and Then – The Last Beatles Song,” penned by Oliver Murray, setting the stage for a deeply moving retrospective that premiered on a Wednesday prior to the video’s release.
Embark on this emotional journey with Peter Jackson’s “Now and Then” video and let The Beatles serenade you one more time. As Jackson envisioned, it’s a production that will tug at the heartstrings and might just draw a tear from the eye of those who’ve loved and lived with the music of the world’s most storied band.
Get into the nostalgia, witness the magic and keep the Beatles’ legacy alive! Watch the “Now and Then” video below.