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Help! Reviews

Shot on location in the Bahamas, Austria, and on Salisbury Plain, HELP!, the second Beatles film, is nonsensical fun. Filled as it is with wonderful music and enlivened by the Fab Four's engaging screen presence, the story revolves around the crazed efforts of a pair of Eastern religious zealots, Clang (Leo McKern) and Ahme (the ravishing, underrated Eleanor Bron), to get hold of a sacred ring that has been given to Ringo by a fan and which he can't get off his finger. Foot (Victor Spinetti), the scientist Ringo approaches for help, comes to believe that the ring will allow him to control the world, and he and his assistant (Roy Kinnear) join the scramble to wrest the ring from Ringo. Antics aplenty ensue as Ringo and the other Beatles lead their pursuers on a madcap, globe-trotting chase. Silly at its worst and brilliant at its best, HELP! picks up where the joyous insouciance of A HARD DAY'S NIGHT--director Richard Lester's first collaboration with the Fab Four--left off. McKern, Bron, Kinnear and Spinetti display fine comedic timing, and the Beatles make a reasonable stab at being a modern-day version of the Marx Brothers.