A celebration of life as one big pop song, the Beatles’ 1964
musical farce opens with the famous image of the band being chased down the street by a mob of screaming girls and barely slows down from there. Director Richard Lester’s near-revolutionary visuals also framed a prescient commentary on the age of celebrity the Beatles helped usher in. When John, Paul, George and Ringo conduct an impromptu jam session in the caged cargo section of a train, all while adoring girls claw at them through the wires, it’s a moment that’s both effervescent and ominous. A Hard Day’s Night is one long chase sequence, with fame nipping at our heroes’ heels.