Covering a quarter-century of American 'syncopated" music (Ragtime, Jazz, Swing, Blues, Boogie Woogie)from prior to WWI through prohibition, the stock-market crash, the depression and the ... See full summary »
At the end of the Second World War six German ex-soldiers return to Berlin and set up as a bomb disposal group. The pressure of the dangerous work starts to affect them, the more so as they... See full summary »
Highly symbolic and allegorical, this drama takes the search of a son for his father in the chaotic times of the Mexican Revolution and the early 1900s as its basis. Stereotypical (or ... See full summary »
Ignacio López Tarso,
Ronny Bowers, a saxophonist in Benny Goodman's band has won a talent contest an got a ten week contract with a film studio. On his first evening he is supposed to go with the studio's star ... See full summary »
In this all-black cast short, legendary blues singer Bessie Smith finds her gambler lover Jimmy messin' with a pretty, younger woman; he leaves and she sings the blues, with chorus and ... See full summary »
Duke Ellington plays his symphonic jazz piece ('A Rhapsody of Negro Life') with his orchestra against slice-of-life background scenes. The four movements: 1) The Laborers, 2) A Triangle: ... See full summary »
Duke Ellington Orchestra,
A husband who listens to jazz instead of mopping the floor is brained with a mop by his wife; he dreams he's King of Jazzmania, a land of soapsuds where Louis Armstrong performs 'I'll Be ... See full summary »
Fanny Belle DeKnight,
Covering a quarter-century of American 'syncopated" music (Ragtime, Jazz, Swing, Blues, Boogie Woogie)from prior to WWI through prohibition, the stock-market crash, the depression and the outbreak of WWII. A romance between singer Kit Latimer, from New Orleans, and Johnny Schumacher, in which they share and argue over musical ideas ensues. Prior to the making of the film RKO held a contest for the readers of 'The Saturday Evening Post" to vote on the musicians to make up the All-American Dance Band featured in the film; the magazine's readers chose, in the above-the-title listing: Charlie Barnet, Benny Goodman, Harry James, Jack Jenney. Gene Krupa, Alvino Rey, Joe Venuti, and singer Connee Boswell. Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
I came away with a different slant on this film than the other reviews I've seen here, so let me just say that for 1942 this terrific little love note to jazz is remarkably progressive for its day. While it's true that the plot ultimately leads to the white jazz stars of the early '40s, it is true to the roots of jazz and even includes a scene where an adult black musician calls an adult white musician "boy" and it's clear who's teaching who. This movie is as passionate about hot jazz music as were the people who created it, and it shows.
Also, the plot is not as thin as many such films. It has the production values of an "A" picture, and its three stars were not exactly "B" list talent. It sometimes stretches credulity, but no more so than any other musical, and in fact even less so, considering that the music is an inherent part of the story.
Here's hoping TCM shows this again soon; I'd love to record and keep it, as I doubt an official DVD release is in the offing.
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