Song Analysis: Across The Universe

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Across the Universe In the movie Across the Universe, the romance between an upper-class American girl, Lucy, and a poor artist from Liverpool, Jude, is framed by the music of the Beatles and the Vietnam War. Each song is carefully and beautifully woven into the plot of this story. It would not seem as if one could find a way to select such songs and give them a real meaning and purpose. Even though a large portion of Beatles’ music does not have a very clear meaning by itself, or only seems to have one specific meaning, the plot of Across the Universe provides a fresh new perspective to each song. When one listens to a Beatles’ song by itself, there would seem to be either no meaning to the piece, or one clear meaning. An example is the…show more content…
“Oh please, say to me, you’ll let me be your man.” The lyrics themselves show a man imploring this woman to allow him into her life as her lover. In the film, this song is sung by the character Prudence. Prudence is a cheerleader from Ohio who shows a very clear desire for another girl on her squad. So when singing this song Prudence sees this girl with another boy and is pleading to her, “Oh please! Say to me, you’ll let me be your man.” In this context it is more than simply a man pursuing a woman; it is a woman pleading to be her lover and saying, “I can give you whatever he can, and more.” This scene was extremely powerful because by the end of the song, Prudence decides that she will no longer wait for this girl whom she is deeply infatuated with, and starts on a new journey. Later in the film we hear the song, “Dear Prudence.” The general message of this piece is that sometimes we must throw caution to the wind, and have a little fun. The song chants, “Dear Prudence, won’t you come out to play. Dear Prudence, greet the brand new day.” The typical meaning of this song is actually quite ironic due to the fact that the word prudence is synonymous with caution. However, in the movie we see Prudence has had her feelings hurt and is hiding away, but is then later…show more content…
She also doubles as Jude’s landlord. The first song she sings in the film is “Why Don’t We Do It in the Road?” This song is a very simple twelve-bar blues song that was written by Paul McCartney as a message to the weight that is put on human procreation. In the film, it seems more as if it is a metaphor for extreme peer pressure. Right before this song is performed by Sadie, we see Lucy trying to convince her mother to allow her to leave home and travel to New York. Her mother is very worried at this idea and Lucy says, “Don’t worry Mom, the big bad city’s not gonna get me.” Then we see Lucy sitting in a crowded night bar, very dark and dingy, with Sadie singing, “Why don’t we do it in the road? No one will be watching us, why don’t we do it in the road?” It sort of says, “Hey you’re here, everyone is doing it, what’s the

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