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That Thing You Do
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15 February 2010
A Park in the Dark
Hollywood Bowl
Forum Posts: 370
Member Since:
5 February 2010
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I suppose this is probably old hat for a lot of you, but I thought I'd start a topic on it anyway.  Can't hurt, right?

I really enjoyed That Thing You Do when it came out, and the soundtrack was a lot of fun as well.  I understood from the start that there were some intentional tips-of-the-hat to The Beatles, in a sort of generic way, throughout the movie: the haircuts, the basic "sound" of the songs, even some of the guitar riffs (the ending lick is a dead-copy of the closing riff to "I Saw Her Standing There", and the final chord is the same chord used at the end of "Till There Was You").  But only recently have I started to notice some of the more particular, specific link-ups to the story of The Beatles.

- Looking at old pictures of Pete Best, I thought he bore more than a passing resemblance to Tom Everett Scott (who, of course, played Guy Patterson, the drummer for The Wonders)

- Old pictures of Brian Epstein look an awful lot like Tom Hanks, who played the manager of The Wonders

- The film's portrayal of The Wonders' hit song is interesting.  It's a power-ballad of some mediocrity, until the drummer spontaneously decides to speed it up by playing a gutsier rhythm - then it turns into a hit record.  This mirrors the story of "Please Please Me", the way George Martin tells of the account (although it was John and Paul who decided to speed it up, not Ringo, necessarily)

- The Wonders become a hit band after their regular drummer breaks his arm and gets replaced by a fill-in drummer who just fits better - sort of a marriage of the Jimmy Nicol story and the Ringo story

- The drummer for The Wonders gets tagged by his managed with a pair of "signature" sunglasses, and that becomes his on-stage gimmick.  I was just reading the other night that Stu Sutcliffe did the same thing, wearing sunglasses on stage on a regular basis

There must be a web site out there somewhere that draws out all of these links more specifically, no?

Not a bit like Cagney.
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