THE US VS. JOHN LENNON is a riveting documentary that shows how the judicial and immigration system works in the United States. John Lennon was placed under the microscope by President Nixon and the US FBI during the early 1970s because he posed as a threat to Nixon's political campaign, and an intense influence on the youth of America as a result of his music and iconoclastic image. Bottom line, the film focuses on Lennon's activism as well as the controversial and gray aspects of the meaning of activism and dissent.
Director David Leaf interweaves Lennon's music within the documentary with a collage of images of the mop-top Beatle to the bearded-hippie shouting for world peace from an Amsterdam hotel room alongside the press and fellow peers. The core participants and leaders of the late 1960s and early 1970s are presented in the film, such as John Sinclair, Angela Davis, J. Edgar Hoover, President Richard M. Nixon, and various writers and journalists who reported about Lennon. The interesting aspect are the recent interviews of those political activists who attempted to make a mark on society. Within Leaf's documentary is the past, but the political atmosphere of the present appears to parallel or bear similarities to the past.
THE US VS. JOHN LENNON is entertaining. In light of serious events that occurred in Lennon's life, he tend to press on. There are funny moments in the film as well as serious ones. But the film also presents the chilling aspects of the system of government, and the powers that be. Lennon may have been one the last influential figures of the 1960s who spoke and sang a thousand words to a generation that just wanted to be listened and understood, and politics did not stop him from creating his love of music for all to hear.
This film is highly recommended for all Lennon fans as well as those who would like to understand the relationship between politics and music.