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Jailhouse Rock
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Jailhouse Rock More at IMDbPro »

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39 out of 46 people found the following review useful:

Corny yet enjoyable

Author: Mika Pykäläaho (bygis80@hotmail.com) from Järvenpää, Finland
24 June 2003

Elvis Presley played in over 30 movies and most of them were honestly pretty much crap. It's a bloody shame because everyone can see from miles away that he was definitely a believable and gifted actor too. The films he did were just terrible waste of his time and talents. Of course any fan will appreciate Presley's performances but it would have been nice to see Elvis becoming the new James Dean. With films like these it's no surprise it never happened and we all remember him best from his career as a singer and the king of rock n' roll. "Jailhouse rock" is one of his better movies. I have to admit that although I'm not a fan I enjoy watching these flicks. Elvis Presley's movies are cute and harmless entertainment. Corny of course but that's the fun of it. The sequence with the title song is so important part of the rock music history that it alone makes "Jailhouse rock" worth watching. But still I can only wonder what the guy might have been in right films.

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31 out of 43 people found the following review useful:

some reviewers need anger management help!

Author: unclerussie from Orlando, Florida
20 March 2003

Wow..did you see the review of this film by "chowderhead"? Well, "chowderhead" is appropriately named and definitely needs some help. Sure, reviews if any kind are always merely one guy's opinion, but some people really go off the deep end. I believe this is one of Elvis' BEST films. How can you say it's the worst? Have you seen "Paradise Hawaiian Style" of "Harum Scarum" lately? This was the brief period in Elvis' career when he was taken somewhat seriously by his directors and fellow cast members. Elvis really tried too; before giving up and giving in to the Colonel and a parade of bad scripts and horrible soundtracks. The late Judy Tyler is great in this movie and the songs are pure early Elvis; good old Rock and Roll! A favorite is "(You're so Square) Baby I don't care". Check out the dance sequence for the song "Jailhouse Rock". It's Elvis at his swivel hipped best. Chowderhead, you must be a huge Pat Boone fan and although he is still a wonderful talent, I wouldn't say he is a hundred times better than Elvis! Debby Boone'e "You Light Up MY Life" is HIP? Get real! And Little Richard has no talent? Stay off the caffiene and chill out. You'll feel better. By the way, Pat Boone NEVER recorded "Hound Dog", so how could his "version" outsell Elvis"? Get your facts straight. Better yet, rent a video or DVD of Jailhouse Rock and this time, watch it with your eyes open.

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23 out of 29 people found the following review useful:

Elvis's best film

7/10
Author: William J. Fickling (wfickling@sc.rr.com) from Columbia, South Carolina, USA
8 January 2005

I saw this film when it came out. I was a sophomore in high school, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I just saw it again on TCM, and guess what? I still enjoy it! This is by no means a work of art; it's plain old fashioned entertainment. Some of the actors in the supporting parts are stilted, and Elvis himself will never be confused with Brando or Dean. But Elvis was a singer, to this day the greatest in rock and roll history, and the musical numbers are first rate. Mickey Shaughnessy, who I can't recall seeing anywhere else, is perfect for the part of Elvis's hillbilly cell mate, and the tragic Judy Tyler shines as the leading lady. (For trivia buffs, she was Princess Summerfallwinterspring on the Howdy Doody Show.) And for those too young to remember the 50s, which probably includes the majority of this website's users, this will provide a good sample of popular entertainment in that era. 7/10

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14 out of 20 people found the following review useful:

Reactions to one of Elvis' best flicks

7/10
Author: funkyfry from Oakland CA
15 October 2002

I heard a young woman who hadn't seen "Jailhouse Rock" before leaving the Parkway Theater here in Oakland say "I didn't expect it to be so sad." And yes, it's a pretty dark version of Elvis' own early life. To add to the dark shadow over this film, Elvis' lovely and tolented young co-star, Judy Tyler, died before this film was released (I believe it was a car accident, but I could be wrong). Elvis was pretty broke up about it, and so am I. Well, enough said, it's got the classic "Jailhouse Rock" number (often excerpted and included in TV retrospectives on Elvis), with some pretty smooth dance moves revealed by the often immobile Elvis. E really shines in this one; one of his best films.

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10 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

quite possibly Presley's best film

8/10
Author: didi-5 from United Kingdom
15 January 2009

Great songs, a fine leading actor and actress (Elvis, not the world's greatest actor but doing his Method bit here; and the ill-fated Judy Tyler), and an engrossing story make 'Jailhouse Rock' a great rock 'n' roll musical, and by far one of the best movies made by The King at the peak of his powers.

Yes, there are some cringeworthy bits ('it's only the beast in me'), but in the main this is a rags to riches tale which showcases some raw Presley performances, especially the title track and the quieter 'Young and Beautiful' alongside a contemporary tale of fights, attitude, and the county jail.

The great surprise is that this film still looks and feels fresh after more than fifty years. The pity is that Elvis would only have a handful of decent performances before the rot set in with 'Kissin Cousins', 'Tickle Me', and the like.

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9 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

One of Elvis' greatest: 8/10

8/10
Author: Aida Nejad from Gothenburg, Sweden
7 March 2009

"It ain't tactics, honey. It's just the beast in me." Elvis is smoldering in this classic flick, and he delivers a great performance as Vince Everett; a youngster who is thrown in jail on the charges of manslaughter, and then becomes a rock star when released. Judy Tyler is wonderful, and it's a shame we lost her at such a young age. Mickey Shaughnessy gives a solid performance as Hunk Houghton, the jealous former cell mate and business partner. The soundtrack is amazing, featuring songs as Jailhouse Rock, Young And Beautiful, One More Day, Don't Leave Me Now, and my favorite, I Want To Be Free. You can't help but wonder how many other great movies like this Elvis could've made if his manager Col. Tom Parker didn't screw things up for him. Ah well, see this great movie and enjoy, because it's a one of a kind.

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13 out of 20 people found the following review useful:

Not bad

7/10
Author: preppy-3 from United States
7 May 2005

Vince (Elvis Presley) is a backwoods boy with a HUGE temper problem. One day he beats a guy to death in a fight and is sent to prison. While there he's cell mates with Hunk (Mickey Shaughnessy) who gets him interested in playing the guitar and singing. When released Vince makes it big with the help of Peggy (Judy Taylor)...but becomes an obnoxious jerk. He treats Hunk and Peggy like dirt. Will he come around and treat them better? What do you think?

I tuned into this just to watch the "Jailhouse Rock" number. I'm not a fan of Presley but I heard this was good. I was surprised at how much I liked it. All the songs are good and the "Jailhouse Rock" number is just stunning--easily one of the best choreographed musical numbers ever caught on screen. Taylor is pretty and just charming in her role (sadly she died right after completing this) and Shaughnessy offers strong support. Also it's well-directed in Cinemascope.

The only debits are the overly familiar story and Presley's acting. He was a great singer but no actor--sometimes it was almost embarrassing to watch how badly he played scenes. But it's still worth watching for the songs and the other performances. I give this a 7.

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11 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

If Only All Inmates Were Like This

5/10
Author: ccthemovieman-1 from United States
10 July 2006

Elvis Presley was a great singer and, of course, one of the real legends in the history of show business.....but his films? Well, I guess some people liked them. They were too sappy for me, sort of like those Frankie Avalon-Annette Funicello Bikini Beach movies of that era.

I did check this one out, hoping there would be a number of fast songs in here, such as the great title tune "Jailhouse Rock." To my disappointment, almost all the songs were ballads.....hardly something to get pumped over.

The inmates in this prison were most clean-cut, nicest and most polite "jailbirds" you ever did see. This wasn't a jail; it was the Young Republicans Club. The only nasty person was the warden. Well, they set a trend there as wardens have been nasty in the movies ever since. As for Elvis, let's just say I preferred his records to his movies.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

"Dancing To The Jail House Rock"

7/10
Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York
10 January 2009

For his third feature film Colonel Tom Parker over to MGM where they assigned a couple of very experienced hands behind the camera, producer Pandro S. Berman who among other folks he produced for was Fred Astaire and director Richard Thorpe. He was one of MGM's busiest craftsmen, who directed just about every MGM star during that studio's golden years. As he always did, Colonel Parker made sure that his star got the best possible support and he didn't fail him in Jailhouse Rock.

In Jailhouse Rock, Elvis plays a rather surly, ill tempered youth whose quick with his fists. A brawl in a bar and Elvis kills a guy with his fists. Granted the deceased was a lout, still the state does frown on that and Elvis got a term for manslaughter. While there, he shares a cell with old time country singer Mickey Shaughnessy.

Mickey helps Elvis survive prison and discovers he's got a voice. When he's released before Shaughnessy, Elvis goes out in search of a career and determined to let nothing stand in his way. He discovers the music business is a cutthroat one and he responds in kind. He gets his success, but it costs him the love and respect of all around him, including young record promoter Judy Tyler who develops a thing for the king.

Elvis has some good songs to sing with the title song being the biggest hit from this film. Jailhouse Rock is given a good MGM style production, worthy of anything you might have seen MGM give one of Fred Astaire or Gene Kelly's musicals. And the record of course is still selling good.

Mickey Shaughnessy appeared in a lot of good films in the Fifties, but usually playing cheerful oafs. This was one of the few times he had a serious part and he carries it off well.

I was disappointed that Judy Tyler did not get to display her musical talents. Elvis's is not the only tragic story from the cast of Jailhouse Rock. Young Judy Tyler with a brilliant career in front of her was killed shortly after completing this film with her husband in an automobile accident. I remember it well because she had been Princess SummerFallWinterSpring on the Howdy Doody Show a few years earlier. After leaving that she got good notices on Broadway in one of Rodgers&Hammerstein's lesser shows, Pipe Dream.

My guess is that Colonel Tom did not want anyone sharing musical time with Elvis so early in his career. Otherwise she might have gotten a number on her own and a duet with the king. Her musical talent would have been preserved in a hit film, but who could have known? Elvis would have to wait until Viva Las Vegas and Ann-Margret before he got a leading lady who could sing and dance to match him.

The plot of the film is similar to The Carpetbaggers so if you've seen that you know how this one comes out. Elvis does a fine acting job and singing, well he is the king.

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

A pop culture time capsule from the late 1950's decade

7/10
Author: marxi from Louisville, Kentucky
29 March 2003

"Jailhouse Rock" is an entertaining film which Elvis Presley, its star, carries all the way. Judy Tyler is gorgeous as a love interest and Mickey Shaughnessy is tough but goodhearted as his jailhouse buddy. They provide good support. This is an early film for Elvis, maybe only his second film after his debut in "Love Me Tender." This movie felt like a pop culture time capsule from the late fifties era with the clothes, the music and the cars. It is a forerunner of many Elvis films of the same type where Elvis sings, overcomes obstacles and gets the girl, and yet it has the charm and innocence often typical in this era. The concept is still fresh in 1957, and it shows in Elvis's performance which is good. The plot is a bit weak in places but passable. "Jailhouse Rock" features roughly half a dozen performances by Elvis and they all add to the fun. There are also one or two numbers by costar Mickey Shaughnessy and they also enhance the film. This is one of the more substantial Elvis Films and a good one to watch to introduce you to the phenomenon of Elvis Presley. Sadly, Elvis's lovely costar Judy Tyler was killed in an automobile accident before the film was released in theaters. It has been said that Elvis refused to watch "Jailhouse Rock" ever again after Judy's death. I give this movie an 82/100 points.

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