7.8/10
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Chuck Berry Hail! Hail! Rock 'n' Roll (1987)

This documentary movie covers two concerts at the Fox Theatre in St. Louis, Missouri, to celebrate Chuck Berry's 60th birthday, and also discusses his life and career.

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Cast

Credited cast:
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Himself
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ingrid Berry ...
Herself
...
Himself
...
Himself
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Himself
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Himself - DVD only
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Himself
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Himself
...
Herself
Johnnie Johnson ...
Himself
...
Himself
Bobby Keys ...
Himself
Chuck Leavell ...
Himself
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Himself (archive footage)
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Himself
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Storyline

St. Louis, Missouri. For Chuck Berry's 60th birthday, Keith Richards assembles a pickup band of Robert Cray, Joey Spampinato, Eric Clapton, himself, and longtime pianist Johnnie Johnson. Joined on stage by Etta James, Linda Ronstadt and Julian Lennon, Berry performs his classic rock songs. His abilities as a composer, lyricist, singer, musician and entertainer are on display and, in behind-the-scenes interviews, are discussed by Bo Diddley, Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, the Everly Brothers, Bruce Springsteen and others. There's even a rarity for Berry, a rehearsal. Archival footage from the early 1950s and a duet with John Lennon round out this portrait of a master. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Whole World Knows the Music. Nobody Knows the Man.


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

9 October 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hail! Hail! Rock 'n' Roll  »

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Box Office

Gross:

$719,323 (USA)
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1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce voted to give Chuck Berry a star on the Hollywood Boulevard Walk of Fame a couple of years before this film was made. The star was never dedicated because nobody was willing to step forward to pay for it. In order to help promote the film, Universal Pictures paid for the star and it was dedicated the same week the film was released. See more »

Quotes

Roy Orbison: Well, Chuck Berry is the first singer-songwriter I know of.
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Connections

Featured in Kings of Rock 'n' Roll (2008) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Hail, hail Chuck Berry
20 April 2006 | by (Boulder, CO) – See all my reviews

If you were young when rock-and-roll was young, then you will probably enjoy this; if you were not young at that time, then this would give you a bit of history. Even though I was not around for the era of the big bands, seeing movies like "The Glenn Miller Story" or listening to some Artie Shaw or Tommy Dorsey gave me an appreciation for the music of a previous generation, and an understanding that those of that generation are not hopelessly antiquated.

The bulk of the movie is footage of a concert in St. Louis at the Fox Theater in celebration of Berry's 60th birthday in 1986. Berry plays a lot of his classics - he was still an amazingly agile and robust performer at the time. Kieth Richards plays a big part in this movie. Apparently Richards was bothered by the fact that Berry always picked up lackluster backup bands wherever he played and he put together a good backup band for this concert, himself included of course. There are guest appearances by Eric Clapton, Robert Cray, Linda Ronstadt, Etta James, and Julian Lennon. There are interviews with Bo Diddley, the Everly Brothers, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, Little Richard (a delight), John Lennon, Bruce Springsteen, and much talk from Keith Richards. The fact that Richards is still alive at this late date is a testament to the resilience of the human body.


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