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The Blues Brothers (1980)

 -  Action | Comedy | Crime  -  20 June 1980 (USA)
8.0
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 115,464 users  
Reviews: 304 user | 116 critic

Jake Blues, just out from prison, puts together his old band to save the Catholic home where he and brother Elwood were raised.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Elwood Blues (as Elwood)
...
...
...
Ray
...
...
...
Donald 'Duck' Dunn (as Donald 'Duck' Dunn)
...
Willie Hall ...
Tom Malone ...
Lou Marini ...
Matt Murphy ...
Alan Rubin ...
...
Edit

Storyline

After the release of Jake Blues from prison, he and brother Elwood go to visit "The Penguin", the last of the nuns who raised them in a boarding school. They learn the Archdiocese will stop supporting the school and will sell the place to the Education Authority. The only way to keep the place open is if the $5000 tax on the property is paid within 11 days. The Blues Brothers want to help, and decide to put their blues band back together and raise the the money by staging a big gig. As they set off on their "mission from God" they seem to make more enemies along the way. Will they manage to come up with the money in time? Written by Sami Al-Taher <staher2000@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

band | money | catholic | prison | singer | See more »

Taglines:

They'll never get caught. They're on a mission from God. See more »

Genres:

Action | Comedy | Crime | Music

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 June 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Blues Brothers  »

Box Office

Budget:

$27,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$54,200,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended)

Sound Mix:

(magnetic prints)| (optical prints)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Bluesmobile was actually going 118 miles per hour under the elevated train line. The film crew received permission to clear the street for two 100 MPH+ passes. Stunt pedestrians were added after the first pass to add realism. See more »

Goofs

After Mystery Woman bombs the transients' hotel, Jake and Elwood emerge from rubble made of obvious fake "stage bricks". Stage bricks are brick-colored lightweight-material safety blocks used to reduce injury to actors during destructive special effects shots. Despite their convincing coloration, stage bricks are readily noticeable because (unlike real structural brick debris) they are almost always "clean" : no visible traces of mortar-cement on them. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Prison Guard #1: Yeah, the Assistant Warden wants this one out of the block early. Wants to get it over with fast.
Prison Guard #2: Okay, let's do it.
[rattling the bars with his baton]
Prison Guard #1: Hey come on, it's time to wake up.
Prison Guard #2: Wake up. Let's go, it's time.
[striking the sleeping Jake with his baton]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Woman on the Cutting Room Floor See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jeopardy!: Episode #26.5 (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

BOOGIE CHILLUN
Written and performed by John Lee Hooker
Courtesy of Fantasy Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Nitro and Glycerin
15 August 2000 | by (San Jose, California) – See all my reviews

A musical comedy action fantasy should not work, especially when one considers that it is the first SNL skit-to-screen adventure (which, history has shown us, is a decidedly mixed bag). But this one does. Two of the best car chases in cinematic history bookend the film, and in between there are show-stopping musical numbers, raw humor, Illinois Nazis, and a seriously disgruntled ex-fiancee. And it all makes perfect sense in the context of the universe created by Aykroyd (who co-wrote), Landis (who directed), and Belushi (his barely contained zeal provides the battery pack for this film).

Jake (Belushi) and Elwood (Aykroyd) are the former front men of a broken down blues band (actually a stunning collection of blues talent) which disbanded after Jake was arrested several years before. Upon his release, he discovers that his boyhood orphanage home is about to be foreclosed upon for non-payment of property taxes. Beaten up by a nun, sung to by James Brown, and touched by God, Jake sees the light and seeks to put the band together for one last show -- a charity benefit to save the orphanage.

Their journey takes them from James Brown to Aretha Franklin to Ray Charles, John Lee Hooker to Cab Calloway. The movie showcases the overwhelming talent of singers, musicians, and genres long out of vogue with popular musical tastes. Indeed, this movie is a vehicle for giving these performers a chance to shine -- to bring their music back to the masses and ultimately into pop-culture immortality (to go along with their more prestigious musical immortality).

This film is guaranteed to make you tap your feet, laugh out loud, gasp as both a mall and and entire fleet of Chicago police cars are destroyed, and believe in the magical powers of an old cop car. Like I said, it's a musical comedy action fantasy.

And it works.


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