PBS // 2014 // 120 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge Patrick Naugle // May 28th, 2014
It was music to their ears.
The Dave Clark Five and The Beatles hit America in February and March of 1964. In April of that year, the DC5's first single, "Glad All Over," peaked on the Billboard charts, having already knocked The Beatles out of the #1 position in the UK. The Dave Clark Five achieved a record breaking 15 consecutive US hit singles within a two year period -- more than anyone else in the world except The Beatles -- and went on to sell over 100 million records. Through newly filmed interviews, some of the music industry's most famous talent share their memories of The Dave Clark Five and how the music of the 1960s and the cultural revolution of the 1964 changed their lives forever. This extended director's cut of the PBS documentary includes The Dave Clark Five's iconic performances on The Ed Sullivan Show, along with live concert footage and classic TV appearances. The film also features never-before-seen footage from founder Dave Clark's personal archives, together with performances from The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Supremes, Marvin Gaye, Otis Redding, Freddie Mercury, and many more.
As Sir Elton John notes, the three biggest bands to come out of the 1960s were The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and The Dave Clark Five. The Dave Clark Five and Beyond: Glad All Over touches on the all aspects of The Dave Clark Five (often known as DC5), from band leader Dave Clark's early work as an extra in films like The V.I.P.'s and Becket to their eventual rise into the stratosphere of musical stardom with a lineup that included keyboardist/vocalist Mike Smith, bassist Rick Huxley, guitarist Lenny Davidson, Denis Payton on harmonica/saxophone, and Clark on drums. It's a film that will speak to music lovers, but is going to truly thrill those who grew up on -- and still love -- The Dave Clark Five.
How big was The Dave Clark Five? They were the first band to knock The Beatles' hit "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" off the pop charts with their mega-hit "Glad All Over." The band was on The Ed Sullivan Show more than any other UK band. In The Dave Clark Five and Beyond: Glad All Over, musicians Bruce Springsteen and E Street Band member "Little" Steven Van Zant note that there were even magazines dedicated to "The Beatles vs. The Dave Clark Five." So big was The Dave Clark Five that they were considered the rivals of The Beatles. When your claim to fame is being a good enough band to take on the Fab Four, you know that you've made some history. Of course, history decrees that only one band can be the biggest in the world, and The Beatles ended up with that honor. That isn't to diminish any of The Dave Clark Five's accomplishments. DC5 created many songs that are as catchy (if not more so at times) as The Beatles' catalog. The band ended up with over a dozen US singles and has influenced countless other famous musicians.
The Dave Clark Five and Beyond: Glad All Over is sort of a historical record on the DC5, but also record of those who were inspired by them. Interview subjects include some of the best and brightest in the music industry. Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, Dionne Warwick, Elton John, Ozzy Osborne, Gene Simmons (of KISS fame), and past members of The Dave Clark Five are all featured discussing The Dave Clark Five and how the band has influenced their careers. The film moves through all the anticipated beats of The Dave Clark Five's successes and tribulations, and even expands itself into Dave Clark's work post-DC5 on the musical "Time" (quite possibly the kitschiest musical ever made) with such heavy hitters as Stevie Wonder, Freddie Mercury, and legendary actor Laurence Olivier.
There are many Dave Clark Five performances peppered throughout this two hour documentary, which will remind viewers just how vital the music from the 1960s was. One of the film's best moments comes in the form of Tom Hanks' emotionally resonant speech during their induction at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame ceremony. Through these moments, as well as the music and the interviews, viewers are able to catch a glimpse -- if only fleeting -- of how big and important The Dave Clark Five once were.
The Dave Clark Five and Beyond: Glad All Over is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen. The transfer tends to be a bit spotty depending on the scene. Some of the recent interview footage looks great while archival footage (including interviews spanning multiple decades) is in only so-so shape. The soundtrack is presented in DTS 5.1 Surround in English. This audio mix is very good and, obviously, gets its biggest boost in the form of the performances by The Dave Clark Five. Although some of the concert footage is rough, overall the soundtrack boasts very good dynamic range. Also included are English subtitles as well as a PCM Stereo mix in English.
Bonus features include pieces from The Dave Clark Five vault including out-takes, alternative DC5 performances, some interview/archival promo pieces ("You Can't Win 'Em All," "Hits in Action"), a royal command performance (unedited), and some promotional material on Dave Clark's musical "Time."
Worth checking out for music history of the 1960s.
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Scales of Justice
* 1.85:1 Anamorphic
* DTS 5.1 Surround (English)
Running Time: 120 Minutes
Release Year: 2014
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
* Alternate Performances