Monday, August 20, 2012

The Mystery of 'Magical Mystery Tour'

About ten months ago, Psychobabble repeated a rumor that The Beatles' charmingly shambling critical-pariah Magical Mystery Tour might be coming to Blu-ray and DVD in 2012. The rumor was sparked by director Michael Lindsey Hogg, who let this detail slip while announcing that a Blu-ray/DVD release of that other most controversial celluloid look at the Fabs, Let It Be, was also in the works.

We Beatles fans have been known to spin an album or two backwards to uncover secreted clues, so recent evidence that bears out Hogg's claim is causing a bit of a stir. Exhibit A: on October 2, the British Film Institute will be screening the original film plus an all-knew documentary called "Magical Mystery Tour Revisited". Before you deem this less a clue and more an announcement because such a documentary seems to scream "DVD extra," the doc is actually part of the BBC's series "Arena". Considering that the 45th anniversary of Magical Mystery Tour is approaching, it makes further sense that such a documentary might be produced with or without an accompanying DVD release.
More convincing is Exhibit B: the <i>Examiner</i>'s report that the Blu-ray briefly appeared on Amazon.com due to some sort of slip up. However, the page, which revealed an October 9th release date to coincide with Lennon's birthday, was quickly pulled. Amazon Japan has been a bit slower to correct the mistake.

Then there's Exhibit C,  the British Board of Film Classification's Magical Mystery Tour page, which actually lists a menu and features:

 MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR (FEATURE)
MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR (FEATURE WITH DIRECTOR'S COMMENTARY BY PAUL MCCARTNEY)
YOUR MOTHER SHOULD KNOW
 BLUE JAY WAY
THE FOOL ON THE HILL
NAT'S DREAM
I'M GOING IN A FIELD - IVOR CUTLER
HERE WE GO ROUND THE MULBERRY BUSH - TRAFFIC
THE MAKING OF MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR
RINGO THE ACTOR
THE CAST
HELLO GOODBYE
(CREDITS)

This is surely a lot of enticing information, but until Capitol decides to put out an official press release, the mystery of the  Magical Mystery Tour DVD/Blu-ray release will remain magically mysterious.
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