"The Beatles Unauthorized is a 51 minute feature compiled by Good Times video of public domain Beatles material. The main part of this disc is devoted to The Beatles first US concert in Washington, DC. The picture is horrible and the sound is pretty bad too, at least on the concert segment. I'm sure if you were there that night, the sound would have been pretty murky too. There wasn't really equipment back then for bands to fill stadiums with sound. Bands or singers didn't fill stadiums. Nobody except Elvis had that sort of unearthly popularity and even he was dwarfed by the hysteria of the Fab Four. Another amusing segment has an old game show called "I've Got a Secret" in which a person comes on and tells the host a secret and then the contestants have to figure out what the secret was that was whispered in the hosts ear by questioning. The person in question for this show is Pete Best, the Beatles ex-drummer. It's funny because he says that he QUIT the Beatles because he wanted to start his own band. In reality, he was fired. The last major segment is an interview with the Beatles in 1966 right before Candlestick Park, their last tour stop. It's quite entertaining when one interviewer asks "Is the song 'Day Tripper' about a prostitute?" In fact, he should have been asking about what drug it was about! Overall, this disc should only be bought by a real Beatles fan. The poor quality of the concert is nothing a casual fan would want. It's more of historical interest. So I guess if you want the gameshow bit and the interview at the end, its worth 5$. The sound and picture is television of the era quality which is decent. I would recommend The Beatles Anthology over this. Also, Good Times has another DVD composed entirely of non-musical bits of the Beatles called Fun with the Fab Four. That disc is much better. Sometimes you can find both in a two disc set."
Candace Scott | Lake Arrowhead, CA, USA | 03/01/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)
"If you have the Beatles Anthology, this is a waste of time and money. The bulk of the entire 51 minutes here consists of the Beatles February, 1964 in Washington, D.C. Most of that was already aired on the Anthology, and they used a cleaner, crisper tape source. Here the audio is terrible and the video is grainy, muted and washed out. There are no tight camera angles and everything is shot from a blurry distance. The entire footage from here is dreadful.More interesting is the brief segment with Pete Best, from the American game show, "I've Got a Secret." Watching Pete and hearing him interact proves conclusively that Ringo was the right replacement for the boys. Not only could Ringo drum circles around Pete, Ringo's charismatic personality cemented the Fab's legacy. It's impossible not to love Ringo, from this footage it seems a stretch that Pete could ever have won a solid fan base, he's not funny, stiff, and has zero charisma.The only decent bit on the entire DVD is some brief footage (not shown on the Anthology), of the Beatles right before taking the stage in August, 1966, at Candlestick Park. I bought this solely because I am a die-hard Beatlemanic and had never seen this rare footage before. It lasts only 70 seconds. If you're a hardened fanatic like me, you'll have to buy this DVD just for those previous 70 seconds. If you're just a casual fan, pass on this."
All You Need is Love
Gord Wilson | Bellingham, WA USA | 05/01/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Why would I give five stars to a DVD set that isn't even out yet and I know nothing about? SImply to help the thing along. Although I saw the Beatles cartoon show when it initially aired, I had a chance to see a few episodes recently and was surprised at how great it was. I'll qualify that for those viewers who compare everything to films like Snow White that took thirty years to break even.
As most viewers know, TV animation had far smaller budgets, shorter deadlines and smaller staffs than the comparably large funding for lavish theatrical cartoons. Despite a few attempts at very short, limited-animation 'toons, usually shown by a live host to keep the cartoon segments short, nobody thought TV animation could really be done. Hanna-Barbera proved that it could be, but only by taking short-cuts, which is to say, cutting corners somewhere. Later Cartoon Network 'toons would parody the well-known H-B characters running past the same tree or barber pole ten times in an effort to reuse backgrounds and scenery.
Other studios took different tacks to limited animation. UPA developed a much-admired modern, graphic style. DePatie-Freleng, with the Pink Panther, came up with a style all its own. Jay Ward studios are instantly recognizable for Rocky and Bullwinkle, and so on.
Al Brodax came up with a very limited but compelling look for the Beatles in this popular series, and a simple but sure-fire formula: each episode is based around a Beatles' song. Al Brodax also made the later film, Yellow Submarine, awash with wonderfully psychedelic art and animation synched to numbers by the Fab Four. Whoever owns the copyrights to all those songs now, whether it's Michael Jackson or Yoko or Paul McCartney, would have to license these cartoons to appear on DVD. But hopefully, with Beatlemania resurging and interest in animation at an all-time high, they will soon do so, and let more fans (re)discover this light-hearted, good-natured cartoon."
Not the Best
Julie A Ross | Pleasant Hill, CA United States | 06/19/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD features three segments: the Beatles' 1964 Washington, DC concert, their 1964 Hollywood Bowl concert, and a press conference from their August 1966 final tour. In between segments you see a blue screen with music notes all over it, which looks like it was done on a home computer. Next comes the quality issue: I have bootlegs that look and sound better than this DVD. Then comes the issue of completeness: At least two out of the three shows (I'm not sure about the interview) are incomplete. Of the Washington concert, only 8 of the 12 songs are presented. I have a bootleg DVD with all twelve - including "Long Tall Sally." Of the Hollywood Bowl concert, 2 of the 10 existing songs are here. I have a bootleg of the entire performance. If you want the complete Washington concert, check out the Beatles Around the World DVD. As for the Hollywood Bowl, one other song is presented (and in much better quality too) on the Anthology. So after all that, why is my rating so high? Well, yes the quality is bad and the shows are incomplete, but there are few other places where you can legally find this material. So it may not be a bad buy."
Good clean fun
K. Pederson | 03/17/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"My girlfriend and I were just discussing how violent some of the cartoons from our childhood were. Some of our favorites shows from childhood just don't seem appropriate for our kids.
Not the case here -- the Beatles cartoons are good clean fun! As someone else mentioned, the song portion of the show is reminiscient of the "Monkees' romps." As The Beatles' music plays, our Fab Four are often being chased by non-threatening bad guys. Silly but sweet.
Episodes would often end with Ringo delivering a very punny line, punctuated by his charming laugh -- "heh-huh -- yeah."