Movie Review: Good Ol’ Freda (2013)
Plot Summary (Taken from IMDB): A documentary in which Freda Kelly looks back at her career as lifelong secretary for The Beatles.
My Review: One of the best things about this film is its subject, Freda Kelly. She wasn’t just the Beatles secretary. She was also a fan who admired the group enough to have fun working them and being in their circle while respecting their privacy. She is also a link to the Beatles fans and the band through the Beatles fan club and band magazine.
Another great facet of the film is that the film features candid, humorous, and sweet memories of Kelly’s time with the Beatles. When you think of the word “secretary”, you’d think that Kelly would just be typing a lot and answering phones. She did do these things, but she also fought her way through fans to deliver the Beatles’ wages, was there when the Beatles were presented to massive crowds, and rode with the Beatles on the Magical Mystery Tour bus.
In addition, the film uses a variety of sources to tell Kelly’s story including photographs, audio recordings, and interviews with family and colleagues from the past and present. The most interesting source besides Freda herself was the letters that Freda wrote for the Beatles magazines to the fans. These sources give you an insider’s view of Beatlemania and its effect on Kelly.
The most poignant thing about the film is the humble and casual way that it is presented. This didn’t feel like a documentary, but a very long nostalgic conversation. The emotion in Kelly’s face and voice as she examines Beatlemania souvenirs and discusses her memories with a is very touching.
Overall, this was an excellent documentary. I recommend it to any music fan or Beatles fan.