Bio of swing band leader 'Benny Goodman' from age 10 (1919) to his landmark Carnegie Hall band concert in 1938. Not exactly historically accurate, but great music. Also, guest appearances ... See full summary »
The story of legendary jazz drummer, Gene Krupa. Since his youth, all Gene ever wanted to do is play the drums and make music. This is something his parents would not approve of- they want ... See full summary »
Set at the Newport jazz festival in 1958, this documentary mixes images of water and the town with performers and audience. The film progresses from day to night and from improvisational ... See full summary »
Shotgun Jimmy is a nasty piece of work. Ripping off drug dealers, killing policemen, he'd decapitate his own grandmother for a sack full of loot. Schizophrenic, psychopathic, his only ... See full summary »
A plane takes off from Peru (in a long no-dialogue scene) in a storm with two passengers; it lands in Panama with one. The missing man had valuable oil-location maps; everyone who is after ... See full summary »
Bio of swing band leader 'Benny Goodman' from age 10 (1919) to his landmark Carnegie Hall band concert in 1938. Not exactly historically accurate, but great music. Also, guest appearances by many great musicians of the time. Written by
Don Femia <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Already an accomplished piano player, Steve Allen learned how to play the clarinet for this film. See more »
Howler Dept: A radio announcer describes "Stompin' At The Savoy" as a "brand-new Fletcher Henderson arrangement". It was, in fact, an Edgar Sampson composition and arrangement adapted for Benny Goodman's band by Sampson with the permission of Sampson's employer, bandleader Chick Webb. See more »
Benny Goodman's theme song is played over the appearance of the "Universal International" globe. See more »
THE BENNY GOODMAN story, the half brother of the GLENN MILLER STORY and the GENE KRUPA STORY and the first cousin of THE FABULOUS DORSEY'S is a made to order biopic that lacks ooomph because of the reticence of the title character. Steve Allen's Goodman doesn't have the boyish enthusiasm that James Stewart had as Miller, but rather a quiet nerdishness that although possibly respresenting the person correctly, doesn't make for thrilling cinema. Because of this, Allen treads water valiantly, while all Donna Reed has to do is look lovingly at him and look as beautiful as, well, Donna Reed. (The real find in the film is Berta Gerstein, of whom I had never heard, but who I gather from reading the IMBD database, must have been a Yiddish theater/cinema star, as Benny Goodman's mother. She is so real that she makes the rest of the actors seem like cardboard.) But what a treat it is to see and hear Kid Ory, Harry James, Martha Tilton, Lionel Hampton, Ziggy Elman, Urbie Green and to hear Goodman himself.
Where the film shines is in its music and never more so than at the halfway point's Paramount Theater engagement and the ending's Carnegie Hall concert of 1938. In these two spots the film soars. AND THE ANGEL'S SING is classic and SING SING SING will blow the top off your DVD player.
So, THE BENNY GOODMAN STORY, usual biopic with some amazing music. (Want a great double feature? No, not THE GLENN MILLER STORY which is fun, but rather the 1947 NEW ORLEANS with more jazz greats including Louis Armstrong. Now, as Cole Porter would say, you has jazz!)!!!!!!!!
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