Blue Like Jazz (2012)

PG-13  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  13 April 2012 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.9/10 from 2,513 users   Metascore: 48/100
Reviews: 89 user | 38 critic | 14 from

Don, a nineteen-year-old sophomore at a Texas junior college, tries to escape his Bible Belt upbringing for life in the Pacific Northwest at the most godless campus in America.



(screenplay), (story), 2 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
The Pope
Jordan (as Will McKinney)
Jenny Littleton ...
Jeff Obafemi Carr ...
Dean Bowers (as jeff obafemi carr)
Jeffrey Buckner Ford ...
James Larkin (as Jeffery Buckner Ford)
Traber Burns ...
Jenson Goins ...


Disenchanted by the church and his devout Christian mother, 19 year-old Donald escapes Texas for the liberal Northwest and attends Reed College at the urging of his secular father. At Reed College, Don finds that his classmates, from all walks of life, are more anti-religious and anti-everything than he was prepared for. In an attempt to fit in, and more importantly, in an attempt to find himself, Don joins an activist group which forces him to question what he really believes in. Written by napierslogs

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Everybody belongs somewhere.


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexuality, drug and alcohol content, and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

13 April 2012 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Kék, mint a jazz  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$1,200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$258,653 (USA) (13 April 2012)


$594,904 (USA) (1 June 2012)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The movie was made possible by the efforts of fans the refused to see the project die. A campaign on KickStarter was started after a September 16th blog post by Donald Miller that the project was dead due to the lack of backers. By the end of the funding period on October 25th, Save Blue Like Jazz had raised $345,992 (of the $125,000 goal or 276%) from 4495 backers. The earns the project a Hall of Fame ranking on KickStarter as the highest funded project ever. See more »


Don tells his mother that there are no roommates in the dorms at Reed college, but Lauryn tells a story about her "first year roommate". See more »


The Hobo: You only believe that stuff 'cuz you're afraid to hang out with people that don't.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The names of over 1,500 people were listed as Associate Producers of the movie. See more »

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User Reviews

Painful to watch, at first
11 June 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

It could have been a good film, but it almost seems as though those involved were too close to it to see how it fails to draw any kind of an emotional response or much sympathy for the main character until much later in the story. The pace is slow, nothing was all that funny to me, cartoonish devices were used inconsistently and unnecessarily, which made the first half feel disjointed, as though different sections were directed by different people. Actions that moved the plot forward were so subtle as to be easily missed. One of my least favorite devices is to show a progression of time with a montage and music playing over the voices.

Some scenes left me wondering 'why did they do that?' as there was no obvious metaphor (or perhaps it was so obvious as to be insulting) and no further reference given to, for instance, a worn costume. Once some of the relationships were established, the movie picks up momentum, and the ending rather saves it.

I'm sure it's very difficult to portray the complex themes from the book, which makes it such rich reading. Action flicks are much easier. Much had to change for a movie to be created out of it. But a good director knows how to accomplish this without confusing, boring, or trying the patience of his audience. Perhaps Mr. Taylor should stick to music unless he wants all his work to go straight to DVD or the Hallmark channel. Sure, compared to other "Christian" movies this one rises above, but shouldn't we hold all movies to a critical standard, regardless of the company that made it?

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