John & Yoko: Give Peace a Song
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On May 26, 1969, John Lennon & Yoko Ono moved into the Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Montreal for the historic, seven-day bed-in protest against violence as a whole in the world. Captured on film and video by various visitors over the seven days, Give Peace A Song documents the events that took place in the infamous suite 1742. This DVD highlights the various visits from celebrities & musicians like Tom Smothers, Derek Taylor, Petula Clark, Dr. Timothy Leary, civil rights activist Dick Gregory, and political cartoonist Al Capp to name only a few. On June 1, the last day of the bed-in, John posted lyrics on the suite's walls for a spontaneous group recording of all who were still visiting the famous couple to sing harmoniously to the world the now universal anthem for peace "Give Peace A Chance." The song was later released as a single and shot straight up the Billboard charts, and that actual recording is witnessed here on this DVD.
Give Peace A Song also features bonus television interviews, a John & Yoko press conference, Petula Clark's visit to the bed-in, and a staggering wealth of pictures that have been held captive for over 35 years.
* A new 45 minute documentary of the famous bed-in and the creation of "Give Peace A Chance." * Film from the CBC archives, outtakes from John & Yoko's own movie of the event, and home movies taken by visitors. * New interviews with Yoko Ono, Tom Smothers, Petula Clark, and the song's producer, Andre Perry. * A wealth of unreleased photos by Gerry Deiter, the only photographer given 24 hour access to the bed-in. * Over 35 minutes of bonus material including bonus television interviews, the press conference, Petula Clark's visit, interviews from Andre Perry, Tom Smothers and Judy Steinberg.
1. The Bed-In Begins
2. The Choir Assembles
3. Recording "Give Peace A Chance"
4. Pete Seeger Makes The Song Famous
5. The Song Lives On
6. John Lennon Performs "Give Peace A Chance"
7. "Peace Weekend" Interview
8. Television Interview
9. Press Conference
10. Andre Perry Interview
11. Petula Clark Visits The Bed-In
12. Tom Smothers And Judy Steinberg Bonus Interview
As the years pass since John Lennon and Yoko Ono staged their 1969, weeklong "Bed-In for Peace" at the Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Montreal, the events reputation has taken on an increasingly clownish aspect in memoirs and biographies written about life with the Beatles. But John & Yoko: Give Peace a Song, a documentary drawing from hundreds of hours of film footage shot in the celebrity couples small bedroom, proves the time was well spent in exhaustive, public exchanges between Lennon and some of the most influential people of the day. Talking with and sometimes debating the likes of Timothy Leary, Tommy Smothers (fresh from the controversial cancellation of his outspoken comedy show on CBS), Dick Gregory, and assorted revolutionaries, Lennon stayed on-message about the practicality of non-violent solutions to the eras most serious problems. It might be easy today for some of their then-contemporaries to look back and dismiss Lennon and Ono as self-aggrandizing and politically naïve publicity hounds. But the depth, rigor, and consistency of Lennons thinking about peace, both as a personal choice and collective tool for social change, was quite striking as evidenced in this movie. Everything leads to the momentous, chaotic, and fun recording of "Give Peace a Chance," which--as the film demonstratesinstantly became an anti-war anthem for millions. Special features include a terrific, complete television interview with Lennon on the CBC. --Tom Keogh
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