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St. Louis Blues (1958)

 -  Biography | Drama | Music  -  7 April 1958 (USA)
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 381 users  
Reviews: 16 user | 4 critic

Will Handy grows up in Memphis with his preacher father and his Aunt Hagar. His father intends for him to use his musical gifts only in church, but he can't stay away from the music of the ... See full summary »

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Title: St. Louis Blues (1958)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Blade
...
Singer
...
Bessie May
...
Elizabeth
Juano Hernandez ...
Rev. Charles Handy
Teddy Buckner ...
Musician
Barney Bigard ...
Musician
George 'Red' Callender ...
Musician
Lee Young ...
Musician
George Washington ...
Musician
...
Will Handy as a boy
...
Aunt Hagar
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Storyline

Will Handy grows up in Memphis with his preacher father and his Aunt Hagar. His father intends for him to use his musical gifts only in church, but he can't stay away from the music of the streets and workers. After he writes a theme song for a local politician, Gogo, a speakeasy singer, convinces Will to be her accompanist. Will is estranged from his father for many years while he writes and publishes many blues songs. At last the family is reunited when Gogo brings them to New York to see Will's music played by a symphony orchestra. Written by Lisa Grable <grable@unity.ncsu.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The glitter and glory story of the man whose rhythm and blues beat became all America's heartbeat!

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Music

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 April 1958 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Lamento Negro  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although uncredited, conductor of the finale C. Bakaleinikoff is billed on the poster outside the concert hall. See more »

Goofs

Late in the movie, Gogo runs into Elizabeth and explains she was just passing through St. Louis. The Hanleys live in Memphis. See more »

Quotes

Gogo Germaine: You're about to hear some facts Reverend.
See more »

Connections

Edited into Afro Promo (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Saint Louis Blues
Written by W.C. Handy
Performed by Nat 'King' Cole and Pearl Bailey
Later sung by Eartha Kitt, then Nat 'King' Cole, with orchestra conducted on-screen by C. Bakaleinikoff
See more »

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User Reviews

The life of W. C. Handy , the growing up and finding success part.
9 February 2002 | by (san francisco, usa) – See all my reviews

It's incredible to see all this talent in one place. It's too bad that afro-americans were not supported commercially in the 50's, this film then could have been easy to find. As it is, the big A doesn't carry (or even mention) it. The performances of eartha kitt and nat cole are pretty subdued, for the period of the piece. But ella fitzgerald swings nicely and pearl bailey has a good moment. As for over all film quality, it's a bit stiff ( e.g., nat cole dropping his cane and falling to his kness against the screen door mimics lou pinela tring to convince an umpire he touched home plate), probably a bit more from direction than lack of talent, and the plot , trite. Fortunately, it doesn't dwell very long on the angst between slices of musical venue. A collector's item and an historical document.


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