7.7/10
780
16 user 10 critic

Thelonious Monk: Straight, No Chaser (1988)

A documentary film about the life of pianist and jazz great Thelonious Monk. Features live performances by Monk and his band, and interviews with friends and family about the offbeat genius.

Director:

Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

1 nomination. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Ad

Genius (TV Series 2017)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A series which explores how patent clerk Einstein could not get a teaching job or doctorate in his early life, yet managed to go on to solve the secrets of the universe.

Stars: Geoffrey Rush, Johnny Flynn, Nicholas Rowe
Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Documentary on the life of jazz trumpeter and drug addict Chet Baker. Fascinating series of interviews with friends, family, associates and lovers, interspersed with film from Baker's ... See full summary »

Director: Bruce Weber
Stars: Chet Baker, Carol Baker, Vera Baker
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

In 'Round Midnight, real-life jazz legend Dexter Gordon brilliantly portrays the fictional tenor sax player Dale Turner, a musician slowly losing the battle with alcoholism, estranged from ... See full summary »

Director: Bertrand Tavernier
Stars: Dexter Gordon, François Cluzet, Gabrielle Haker
Bird (1988)
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The troubled life and career of the jazz musician, Charlie "Bird" Parker.

Director: Clint Eastwood
Stars: Forest Whitaker, Diane Venora, Michael Zelniker
Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Set at the Newport jazz festival in 1958, this documentary mixes images of water and the town with performers and audience. The film progresses from day to night and from improvisational ... See full summary »

Directors: Bert Stern, Aram Avakian
Stars: Louis Armstrong, Mahalia Jackson, Chuck Berry
Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

"It must 'schwing!'" was the motto of Alfred Lion and Francis Wolff, two German Jewish immigrants who in 1939 set up Blue Note Records, the jazz label that was home to such greats as Miles ... See full summary »

Directors: Julian Benedikt, Andreas Morell
Stars: Freddie Hubbard, Gil Melle, Herbie Hancock
Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Art Kane, now deceased, coordinated a group photograph of all the top jazz musicians in NYC in the year 1958, for a piece in Esquire magazine. Just about every jazz musician at the time ... See full summary »

Director: Jean Bach
Stars: Dizzy Gillespie, Milt Hinton, Marian McPartland
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Jimmy Cleveland ...
Himself (trombonist, Thelonious Monk Octet)
Harry Colomby ...
Himself (personal manager)
John Coltrane ...
Himself
Ray Copeland ...
Himself (Thelonious Monk Octet: trumpet) (archive footage)
Nica De Koenigswarter ...
Herself
Tommy Flanagan ...
Himself (duo, piano performance)
Larry Gales ...
Himself (Thelonius Monk Quartet / Thelonious Monk Octet, bass player)
Johnny Griffin ...
Himself (Thelonious Monk Octet, tenor sax)
Barry Harris ...
Himself (duo, piano performance)
Bob Jones ...
Himself (road manager)
Teo Macero ...
Himself (Columbia Records producer)
Thelonious Monk Jr. ...
Himself
Nellie Monk ...
Herself
Thelonious Monk ...
Himself (archive footage)
Frank Paccione ...
Himself-Vocalist (singing voice)
Edit

Storyline

A documentary film about the life of pianist and jazz great Thelonious Monk. Features live performances by Monk and his band, and interviews with friends and family about the offbeat genius.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

PG-13
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 October 1990 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Straight, No Chaser  »

Box Office

Gross:

$518,918 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

One of three 1988 Clint Eastwood movies. along with Bird (1988) and The Dead Pool (1988) See more »

Quotes

Thelonious Monk: [scribbles something on a piece of paper] Can you read that?
Nica De Koenigswarter: A beautiful message.
Thelonious Monk: If somebody can decipher that for you, you know, and say what it means, get what it means, it'll upset you. You'll flip, I mean flip for real!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Usual Suspects (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

Sweetheart of All My Dreams
Written by Art Fitch, Kay Fitch and Bert Lowe
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
THE BEST MOVIE OF THE JAZZ GENIUS
20 December 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Thelonious Monk is the most important musician ever produced by this country. He is the greatest composer and the most influential musician of the jazz era. This movie is so incredible because I had not been lucky enough to have seen him before he died, and when I saw the movie I was moved to tears. No one in the movie actually admits he was schizophrenic, but it seems pretty obvious and to me, makes him even more of a genius--that he could write and perform despite his disability. It shows the deep devotion of his wife Nellie, and others who helped him, and finally, how he sank into his illness before he died. Thank you so much, Charlotte Zwerin, for making this paean to Monk. When people are still listening to him hundreds of years from now, they can see him in your wonderful movie.


14 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?