- Outsider Pictures
Director David Trueba sets Living Is Easy with Eyes Closed in 1966. Antonio (Talk to Her's Javier Cámara), a teacher, uses Beatles songs to help teach his students English. While en route to Almería in hopes of meeting John Lennon, who's shooting a movie there, he runs into two different hitchhikers from two different towns: Belén (Natalia de Molina, a cross between Mary Louise Parker and Natalie Portman), a single pregnant woman, and Juanjo (Fransec Colomer), a disaffected teenager. He offers to give both of them a ride.
They're almost disconcertingly trusting, but Antonio, a bachelor, turns out to be a pretty trustworthy guy—though he doesn't appreciate Juanjo's preference for the 'Stones over the Beatles. In Almería, they also befriend a barkeep, who's equally trustworthy. Some things go wrong, some things go right, and everything moves at a rural pace: no one's in a rush and there's always time for one more cerveza.
- MGM/UA Home Entertainment
I assumed while, watching the film, that it represented a form of cinematic wish fulfillment—unlikely Franco-era trio find themselves with the assistance of free-spirited Beatle—except Trueba drew inspiration from a real teacher for the character of Antonio (90-year-old Juan Carrión Gañán). Whether he actually inspired the Beatles to include printed lyrics with all of their subsequent records, I couldn't say, but the band did make the change in the wake of John Lennon's 1966 trip to Spain.
In any case, it's a more enjoyable film than How I Won the War, which never quite clicked for me, unlike Lester's Beatles films, A Hard Day's Night and Help!