7.5/10
486
25 user 10 critic

King of Jazz (1930)

This revue presents its numbers around the orchestra leader Paul Whiteman, besides that it shows in it's final number that the European popular music are the roots of American popular music... See full summary »

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(comedy sketches)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Vocalist ('Song of the Dawn' / 'It Happened in Monterey')
...
Editor ('Ladies of the Press') / Stenographer ('In Conference') / Quartet Member, 'Nellie'
...
Vocalist ('It Happened in Monterey' / 'Bridal Veil' / 'A Bench in the Park')
...
Executive ('In Conference') / Unmarried Husband / Husband ('A Dash of Spice')
William Kent ...
General ('All Noisy on the Eastern Front') / Goldfish Owner ('Oh! Forevermore!') / Unmarried Couple's Offspring / Meek Husband ('Do Things For You') / Man in Closet ('A Dash of Spice')
...
Automobile Owner ('Springtime') / Rear End of Horse / Charles
The Rhythm Boys ...
Vocal Group
...
Fourth Reporter ('Ladies of the Press') / Wife ('A Dash of Spice')
Carla Laemmle ...
Chorine (as Beth Laemmle)
...
Bridegroom ('Bridal Veil' / 'A Bench in the Park')
George Chiles ...
Dancer ('It Happened in Monterey' / Vocalist 'A Bench in the Park' / 'Ragamuffin Romeo')
Jack White ...
Jack White
Frank Leslie ...
Quartet Lead Singer ('Nellie')
...
Desk Sergeant ('Springtime') / Soldier ('All Noisy on the Eastern Front') / Waiter ('Oh! Forevermore!') / Front End of Horse / Quartet Member ('Nellie')

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Storyline

This revue presents its numbers around the orchestra leader Paul Whiteman, besides that it shows in it's final number that the European popular music are the roots of American popular music, called Jazz. Written by Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

revue | storybook | See All (2) »

Taglines:

A NEW ERA in sound and color entertainment!


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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 April 1930 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The King of Jazz Revue  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

(2-strip Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Paul Whiteman's dance double was Paul Small (1909-1954), an acrobatic dancer, and long-time Whiteman imitator, not to be confused with the singer of the same name. See more »

Connections

Featured in The Universal Story (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

Pop Goes the Weasel
(uncredited)
Traditional
Played by Wilbur Hall on the violin
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Mankind's Memory would Be all the Poorer without this Film
24 May 2005 | by See all my reviews

This film is in two-tone Technicolor. It is rather like a vaudeville brought onto the stage with music, short sketches, and variety turns.

From the perspective of today, the glaring omission is that the American Negro influence is not given any acknowledgement whatever. In the melting pot scene at the end the American Negro influence is glaring conspicuous by its absence. Although there is certainly a European influence in American jazz music, it is less of an influence than African music or - don't forget - Mexican music. But the film was of its time, and at that time, the Amrican Negro playing jazz was not officially referred to, and it would be some time before black artists could be spoken of as musical heroes. Funnily enough Paul Whiteman's star singer Bing Crosby, who appears in this film with the Rhythmn Boys, would have a huge role to play here by his collaborations with black artists like the Mills Brothers.

In spite of all this, we must regard this film in the context of the period it was made, regret the Negro omissions and enjoy the film for its own sake.

Other impressive acts are the trick violinist playing "Pop Goes the Weasel", bel canto singer John Boles and that amazing rubber-legged dancer Al Norman. (Eat your heart out, John Travolta)

Although I was not born till a quarter of a century after the release of this film, I cannot but help a feeling of nostalgia. We will certainly never see the like of these acts again. But for this film, the magic of Boles and Norman and the Whiteman orchestra would be gone for good.


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