Yellow Submarine (1968) - Rotten Tomatoes

Yellow Submarine1968

Yellow Submarine (1968)



Critic Consensus: A joyful, phantasmagoric blend of colorful animation and the music of the Beatles, Yellow Submarine is delightful (and occasionally melancholy) family fare.

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Movie Info

Yellow Submarine is an animated meandering journey filled with puns and dry British humor, where psychedelic music videos take precedent over any linear story. What little there is of a plot, however, concerns a vibrantly colored place called Pepperland that resembles the album cover for Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band come to life. The swirling animation is a mixture of pop-culture images and modern artistic styles brought loosely together with a naïve antiwar message and some clever political commentary. The Blue Meanies take over Pepperland, draining it of all its color and music, firing anti-music missiles, bonking people with green apples, and turning the inhabitants to stone by way of the pointed finger of a giant white glove. As the only survivor, the Lord Admiral escapes in the yellow submarine and goes to London to enlist the help of the Beatles (voiced by actors). The charming and innocent boys travel through strange worlds and meet bizarre characters, including the tagalong Nowhere Man. Several blissed-filled musical sequences and drug references later, the Beatles drive out the Blue Meanies and restore Pepperland to tranquility armed with only music, love, and witty remarks. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, Rovi

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Paul Angelis
as Ringo/Chief Blue Meanie
Dick Emery
as Lord Mayor/Nowhere Man/Max
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Critic Reviews for Yellow Submarine

All Critics (60) | Top Critics (18)

The animators let their imaginations run wild, the script is full of inventive wordplay - and obviously, the songs don't hurt either.

September 14, 2018 | Full Review…

The plot and the wry dialogue takes cues from Beatles lyrics and from Edelmann's designs.

July 9, 2018 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Be warned: kids will be thoroughly bored; arthouse fans and nostalgia lovers should be thrilled.

July 6, 2018 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Yellow Submarine is a diverting novelty.

July 4, 2018 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Sure, some of the puns and in-jokes sound a little dated, but any movie that strings together lines from Shakespeare merely as a throwaway comic riff is, in my book, a film for the ages.

December 8, 2014 | Rating: B | Full Review…

Beatles classic with great animation, music.

December 29, 2010 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Yellow Submarine


The Beatles sail through surreal seas in a Yellow Submarine to save Pepperland from the anti-music Blue Meanies in this animated fantasy that blurs the line between fairy tale and acid flashback. A psychedelic pop-art version of a children's storybook, with the Beatles singing and punning their way through the rare quiet moments. The animation is anarchic, witty, and highly influential, and (besides a weak ending and weaker coda) the film's biggest downside may be that there's so much going on in absolutely every frame of the film that it's almost exhausting to watch!

Greg S
Greg S

Super Reviewer

Yes, it's weird. Yes, it looks old. Yes, its pretty much an acid trip on your TV. But the Beatles' classic cartoon is still great, due mostly to its playfulness, witty humor, and way out-there "what am I looking at now?" visuals.

Sam Barnett
Sam Barnett

Super Reviewer

Amazing illustration, and let me repeat, AMAZING ILLUSTRATION. The animation pervades the film and grants us the psychedelic experience of a lifetime accompanied by the timeless music of The Beatles and a very trippy plot. Sadly, the plot is more suited to young children and those who are influenced by hallucinogenic drugs and lacks actual voice acting by The Beatles themselves, who merely make a last minute live action appearance which is all too brief and only leaves us wishing for more of the actual fab four. If you are looking for great hand-drawn animation, a trippy plotline, and an AMAZING soundtrack and love The Beatles then you have something for you here.

Colin Montgomery
Colin Montgomery

Super Reviewer

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