A struggling musician realizes he’s the only person on Earth who can remember The Beatles after waking up in an alternate timeline where they never existed.
That description accurately sums up the premise of the movie. Jack Malik (Himesh Patel) isn’t just struggling, after a ho-hum reception at a local carnival he decides to call it quits. That evening a global blackout occurs for three seconds. Jack happens to be riding his bike at the time and is struck by a bus. He wakes up in intensive care a few days later. After a lengthy recovery he is discharged from the hospital. His groupie/manager/romantic comedy love interest (one-sided) Ellie Appleton (Lily James) gives him a new guitar. He isn’t really interested in playing it, because he called it quits, but decides that “a great guitar deserves a great song” and proceeds to play “Yesterday” by The Beatles.
The song is deeply emotional for his friends, because they’ve never heard it before. He thinks they are pulling a prank on him. How could they know not who John, Ringo, George, and Paul are? He goes home and discovers all history of The Beatles has been erased. How can he use this for fun and profit?
From here the movie becomes your standard romantic comedy. The science fiction element of the movie is only casually looked at again, throughout the movie Jack finds a few more things missing that he remembers, usually for laughs. Also some musician named Ed Sheeran is in this movie, my wife assures me he is someone of note in the music business.
Overall I liked the movie, nice lighthearted comedy, and what are apparently a bunch of Beatles songs, although I only recognized about half of them. This movie was probably made by people for whom the Beatles were a major influence, and believe their songs are just as meaningful today to the world as they were in their own time. But for even a so-so Beatles fan like me, the movie was enjoyable.