Imagine: John Lennon

Producer David Wolper, director and cowriter Andrew Solt, and cowriter and coproducer Sam Egan assembled this 1988 profile of John Lennon from over 200 hours of footage, focusing on the superstar’s public and private lives. No totally uninteresting film could be made with this amount of material to choose from, but the absence of both intelligence and integrity in most areas makes for a perfunctory and often tacky hodgepodge. The chronology of Lennon’s career is handled so confusingly that viewers unacquainted with it are likely to be misled or confounded; Lennon’s books and his own films aren’t even mentioned, much less cited in the credits, and the frequent dubbing of records over concert footage is symptomatic of a general refusal to respect the documentary materials available. Overall this is better than nothing, but not by much. 103 min. (JR)

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