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Yes: Classic Artists
Yes Classic Artists
Actors: Jon Anderson, Peter Banks, Jack Barrie, Jon Brewer, Bill Bruford
Director: Jon Brewer
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Documentary
NR     2008     3hr 24min

The story of Yes is as controversial as their music. The twists and turns of the band's career is now told for the first time in a series of exclusive interviews with Yes members past and present for this definitive and fu...  more »

     
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Movie Details

Actors: Jon Anderson, Peter Banks, Jack Barrie, Jon Brewer, Bill Bruford
Director: Jon Brewer
Creators: Jon Brewer, Jamie Campbell, Laura Royko, Lucy Purdon, Chris Welch
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Documentary
Sub-Genres: Pop, Rock & Roll, Yes, Documentary
Studio: Image Entertainment
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen
DVD Release Date: 01/15/2008
Original Release Date: 01/01/2007
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2007
Release Year: 2008
Run Time: 3hr 24min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaDVD Credits: 2
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 3
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

WONDROUS (AND LONG-WINDED) STORIES
Thomas D. Ryan | New York | 02/24/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"One thing you could never accuse Yes of is restraint. The same band that gave us double albums consisting of four song titles has now released their `authorized' biography, and it is almost as overwhelmingly self-indulgent as "Tales of Topographic Oceans" - but I wouldn't want it any other way. I loved Yes in the `70s. They were such a unique animal that they stood apart from virtually anything else on the scene at that time, and to be sure, no other band ever really approached their combination of intelligence and overkill. The Roger Dean-designed cover for this package promises something extraordinary, as if the old band had somehow turned back the time machine to the days of their classic era. Of course, that would be impossible, but there are elements of this collection that revive old sentiments for the band most responsible for creating `progressive rock'.
Except for background and severely edited bits, the first disk contains virtually no music at all. Instead, the disk rambles on for three and one-half hours of interviews with virtually every bandmember. You could play "The Yes Album" six times in the amount of time it takes to view the interviews on disk one. "Gone With the Wind" is concise in comparison, but the interviews are nonetheless fascinating. Once you get past the visual image of how each member has aged (Chris Squire was almost unrecognizable to me), it becomes apparent that 200+ minutes of interviews is appropriate for a band known for its bombast and sprawling vision. Each member is extraordinarily honest and candid in their recollections, and amusing as well. The video is edited extremely well, switching from person to person with a continuity that allows us to see various aspects of the same story. It is wonderful to see each member speak with candor, and fans will get to know each bandmember in ways that were previously impossible.
As if that weren't enough, a second disk contains an additional hour or so of edited interview footage, which is complete overkill. Comparatively, the music content is paltry, with three vintage videos (that are hilarious in retrospect) and some low-tech, extraneous rehearsal footage dating from 1996. In short, the entire package revolves around whether or not you care to hear the bandmembers recount the convoluted story of one of rock and roll's most tumultuous bands. It is long (and long-winded), but it is also a wondrous story. B+ Tom Ryan"
Almost 5 stars
lonesome crow | ca, | 01/16/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Although I only gave this four stars , this is one of the best yes documentaries since Yesyears. This goes to their complete history and leaves off where Yesyears ended in 1991. I was so glad to see Peter Banks , Trevor Horn and Geoff Downes on this one as well as the other classic members of Yes. But it was sad to not see Tony Kaye and only one footage of Trevor Rabin about his leaving the band in 95. The real interesting interview on the 2nd disc is the bonus one of Peter Banks , who was supposed to be a sit in guest on the "Union" tour until he claims that Steve Howe said he could not join. It happened to be a a concert at the L.A. Forum that I had attended being a die hard Yes fan. Of course like the Moody Blues dvd, There are only Three full music videos. I was not surprised by this , nor was I surprised that one on the videos was Wonderous Stories. But I was pleased that that with the other two being Tempus Fugit , and the full length wersion of Owner of a lonely Heart , I would had hope that the black and white footage from the beat club in 1969 , and the old footage of Yours is no disgrace was included. In spite of this I do think that this is a great successor to Yesyears and is a must for true Yes fans."
Complete and Definitive YES history
Jeff Barnaby | Richmond, Virginia | 04/08/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is absolutely the most definitive history available for YES that has been released to this date. And for a YES fan, any YES fan, it is an absolute must-have. Not having this would be the equivalent of not owning a copy of Fragile or Close to the Edge. And like the music that came from those great albums, this documentary is long, thorough, detailed, honest, and very much worth having.

So far there has been a lot of buzz comparing this video to YESYears, which is not an unfair comparison. But this, and not merely because it is more recent, is a far superior, and more complete YES documentary. And for the record, this comes from somebody who thinks that the YESYears video is not all that bad. But being completely honest, it was told with a somewhat one-sided and biased view towards the "80's modern" YES. It also attempted to gloss over some of the tensions behind the band's history - all of this in support of the notion that Union was a happy, well-thought-out notion that the entire band really loved.

The main reason that this one is better is because it was not produced to support any particular CD or tour and maintains a much more balanced view with regards to the band's history and the relationships therein. YESYears has some great footage and some really good interviews. But again, it is told from the perspective that the Union tour is the ultimate Be-All and End-All to the story YES. This documentary spends much more time and goes into greater detail regarding the band's formation and history. And not just regarding the musicians, but the managers, and engineers too. There is a good chance that you will get to match some names to faces for the first time when watching this video.

What elevates this documentary to the status of superb is the unbridled honesty that is put forth from both principle band members and others who've contributed along the way -- people such as Peter Banks, Trevor Horn, and Roger Dean. Trevor Rabin's presence is minimal, a short interview with him talking about how he got started doing soundtracks - by giving guitar lessons to, of all people, Steven Segal. Still, credit where credit is due, the albums from the Trevor Rabin years are talked about in detail by many of the band members and much of what they have to say is both interesting and surprising. Steve Howe talks at length about touring with Asia and then listening to 90125 for the first time, then half-jokingly half-serious saying, "they want to be like Asia." But after talking for a while about both 90125 and Big Generator, one learns that Howe's opinion of 90125 is not as harsh as one might expect. In fact watching the extended interview clips contained on the second disc reveals Steve Howe talking about listening to the song "Changes" many years later and admitting that the song elevates 90125 to the status of a legitimate YES album, despite its commercial nature. This, for someone who got started with the Rabin era of YES, comes as a ringing endorsement of approval. Of course his comments on Big Generator were exactly what one would expect - but still significant and actually kind of funny. Then again, Rick Wakeman talks about how he would have loved to have played on Big Generator against Trevor Rabin. But then YES never was one to agree on things.

Other memorable moments include Rick Wakeman talking about how much he hated the Union album an threw his copy of out the window of a moving car onto a Florida highway and wondering if it is sill there. Later however he admits that as much as he loathed the record the 8-member tour was amazing. Trevor Horn has a lot to say about the eighties. Bill Bruford talks cynically about recent YES projects as something that resembles a YES cover band where the members are present in mind and body only. And of course, there is the endless debate over whether or not "Tales from Topographic Oceans" was musical brilliance or tonal trash. Stories like this, and many others are what comprise this 204 minute documentary. It does not feel that long at all. Another mark of its quality

It ends with some out-loud thinking about what YES will do next. There are thoughts voiced about another album or a farewell tour. There seems to be a general consensus that whatever they do should be something special and not merely another obligatory farewell tour to sell yet another concert video that can be followed up by yet another farewell tour. Whatever YES decides, there is something poignant about the unmistakable feeling that, we may be nearing the end of the YES journey. If that does indeed turn out to be true then watching this documentary should leave any YES fan out there with a sense that they left it all on the stage when they walked away. And that is a good thing.

"
Warning: Only For Hardcore YES Fans!!!!!
Eclectic | DHS, CA | 05/18/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Five and a half hours of great interviews with a few videos and other treats. The interviews cover all Yes albums in chronological order, all the way through Magnification. Almost everyone is interviewed but sadly not Patrick Moraz and a few others. Most die-hard Yes fans will already know some of the information given but all will walk away with knowledge they never had before. I only wish everyone spoke as clearly as Bill Bruford."