2007 Jukebox Musical film featuring songs written by The Beatles. It was directed by Julie Taymor.It stars Jim Sturgess as (Hey) Jude and Evan Rachel Wood as Lucy (In The Sky With Diamonds), whose romance is the central plot that unfolds over the backdrop of The Sixties.Jude Feeney is an aimless young man from Liverpool who heads to America in hopes of finding his absent father, who knew his mother in WWII but had never been told that Jude was born. When the man proves to be something of a disappointment, he falls in with Ivy League frat boy Max (...well's Silver Hammer, not sung in the film) Carrigan. (Max helped him find his dad; Jude helped Max escape campus authorities; it went on from there.) The two move to New York with Max's sister Lucy. Jude finds himself falling for Lucy, and everyone falls for the hippie scene present there. But the real world intrudes as The Vietnam War wages on, and the political involvement (willing and otherwise) of various members of Jude's True Companions becomes more and more perilous. It threatens to pull Jude and Lucy apart — she's involved, and he doesn't approve of that part of the movement she's in...
Across The Universe contains examples of:
Alice Allusion: After the gang gets ditched by Doctor Robert, en route to Mr. Kite's circus.
Black Comedy Rape: When the gang is trying to help Max find a way to get out of his conscription, Prudence suggests "Tell them you're a pedophile, and you can't wait to molest all the little girls who look like me!"
BSOD Song: "Happiness is a Warm Gun" and "A Day in the Life" both qualify, as well as "Girl" which, despite being the opening number, chronologically comes after the latter song.
Closed Door Rapport: Prudence, who had a crush on Sadie, ends up locking herself in a closet after she realizes that Sadie and Jojo are now a couple. So the gang (minus Sadie and Jojo, incidentally, who have a thing they have to get to) sing "Dear Prudence" to try and convince her to come out of the closet, get out of her funk, and see the world for how wonderful it is.
Another great example is "I Want You" A song about lust and how sexy (heavy) the subject is. In the film the song is set to Uncle Sam's pointing finger on the Army recruiting poster, "I Want You!" during Max's draft board examination. And when the "She's so heavy!" chorus begins, it cuts to a shot of the Army recruits being forced to carry the Statue of Liberty on their shoulders.
Executive Meddling: Attempted, but failed. The studio decided the original cut of the film was "too artsy," and re-edited it to better suit mass audiences. However, Julie Taymor had enough clout to make sure she had Protection from Editors in her contract. She made them release her cut without any alterations, and even went so far as to get the studio to destroy all copies of their re-edited version.
Gayngst: Prudence spends a while of time angsting about not being able to be with her crush of the moment. It doesn't help that she has a habit of falling for straight women who are already in relationships.
Glamorous Wartime Singer: Sadie, particularly during "Helter Skelter," with the scene switching from the performance to Max fighting in Vietnam. It's easy to get chills when her fiery red hair fades into explosions from the battle.
Incompatible Orientation: Prudence falls for both the cheerleader chick and Sadie during the course of the film. Both are straight, and seeing someone else. The unrequited nature of her love for Sadie causes her to suffer a Heroic BSOD until her friends sing to her about how beautiful she is and help (literally) coax her out of the closet.
Interscene Diegetic: Par for the course, being a musical. "All My Loving", "It Won't Be Long", "A Day in the Life", the list goes on.
The Tape Knew You Would Say That: Twice. The second time, it's a fairly typical use: Jude asks "Is that Sadie?" (on the radio) and the radio announcer says "You got that right." The first time, it's played on the audience: Eddie Izzard Malapropers "somersaults" as "Somersets", pauses for the audience to react, and comments "Whatever they are."