The Last Waltz (1978)

PG  |   |  Documentary, Music  |  26 April 1978 (USA)
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A film account and presentation of the final concert of The Band.



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2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
The Band ...
Rick Danko ...
Himself - Bass & Violin & Vocal (as The Band)
Himself - The Band: Lead Guitar & Vocal
Richard Manuel ...
Himself - Piano / Keyboards / Drums / Vocal (as The Band)
Himself - Drums / Mandolin / Vocal (as The Band)
Garth Hudson ...
Himself - Organ / Accordion / Saxophone / Synthesizers (as The Band)
Himself - Performer
Himself - Performer
Himself - Performer
Herself - Performer
Himself - Performer
Herself - Performer
Himself - Performer
Paul Butterfield ...
Himself - Performer
Himself - Performer


Thanksgiving, 1976, San Francisco's Winterland: the Band performs its last concert after 16 years on the road. Some numbers they do alone, some songs include guest artists from Ronnie Hawkins (their first boss, when they were the Hawks) to Bob Dylan (their last, when as his backup and as a solo group, they came into their own). Scorsese's camera explores the interactions onstage in the making of music. Offstage, he interviews the Band's five members, focusing on the nature of life on the road. The friendships, the harmonies, the hijinks, and the wear and tear add up to a last waltz. Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


It Started as a Concert. It Became a Celebration. Now it's a Legend. [theatrical re-release] See more »


Documentary | Music


PG | See all certifications »


Official Sites:




Release Date:

26 April 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El último vals  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$16,151 (USA) (5 April 2002)


$321,952 (USA) (24 May 2002)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Robbie Robertson was impressed by Martin Scorsese's ability to recite the words to the song "Daniel and the Sacred Harp" verbatim. See more »


During Garth Hudson's solo in the song "Stagefright", the entire song cuts forward approximately 25 seconds. See more »


Neil Young: [walking on stage] Hey, Rob, thanks for letting me do this.
Robbie Robertson: Shit! Are you kidding?
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the United Artists opening logo the sound of the filmmakers getting ready to shoot the first sequence of the film (Rick Danko playing pool, which it leads right into) can be heard. See more »


Referenced in Modern Family: The Last Walt (2012) See more »


Loud Prayer
Written and performed by Lawrence Ferlinghetti
See more »

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User Reviews

Out of the Shadow of Woodstock
2 November 2003 | by (Melbourne) – See all my reviews

Martin Scorsese's documentary has been labelled a time capsule of an era, and whilst this type of reference usually sounds overstated, there is no doubting the accomplishment of this film as an event. Many use the documentary 'Woodstock: 3 Days of Peace and Music' as the ultimate example of a music-doco, but whilst the music in The Last Waltz is actually on par with the great performances of Woodstock (bar Jimi Hendrix[there's no substitute]), the thing which elevates The Last Waltz is the photography.

This was the first music doco to be shot on 35mm and watching the concert, you'd think that each performance was carefully choregraphed over a few weeks of shooting rather than over one night. Special thanks must be given to Cinematogrpaher Michael Chapman for his efforts on this film. The look of the film is what elevates it's overall appeal, because the music was always going to be epic, especially with the cavalcade of great names performing. This is just great filmmaking from contemporary cinema's most accomplished filmmaker. And how about that haunting theme that both starts and ends the film. Just great.

34 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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