7.9/10
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The Blues Brothers (1980)

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

Director:

John Landis
Reviews
Popularity
418 ( 84)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Belushi ... 'Joliet' Jake Blues (as Jake)
Dan Aykroyd ... Elwood Blues (as Elwood)
James Brown ... Reverend Cleophus James
Cab Calloway ... Curtis
Ray Charles ... Ray
Aretha Franklin ... Mrs. Murphy
Steve Cropper ... Steve 'The Colonel' Cropper
Donald Dunn ... Donald 'Duck' Dunn (as Donald 'Duck' Dunn)
Murphy Dunne Murphy Dunne ... Murphy 'Murph' Dunne
Willie Hall Willie Hall ... Willie 'Too Big' Hall
Tom Malone Tom Malone ... Tom 'Bones' Malone
Lou Marini Lou Marini ... 'Blue Lou' Marini
Matt Murphy ... Matt 'Guitar' Murphy
Alan Rubin Alan Rubin ... Alan 'Mr. Fabulous' Rubin
Carrie Fisher ... Mystery Woman
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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 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

Taglines:

A briefcase full of blues. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 June 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Return of the Blues Brothers See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$27,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,858,152, 22 June 1980, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$57,229,890

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$115,229,890, 31 December 1983
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended)

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (magnetic prints)| Mono (optical prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Right before shooting the final scene, which required him to do all sorts of on-stage acrobatics, while performing at the Hollywood Palladium in front of an audience of hundreds of extras, John Belushi tried out some kid's skateboard, and fell off and seriously injured his knee. Lew Wasserman, the head of Universal Pictures, called the top orthopedist in Los Angeles, and made him postpone his weekend until he could shoot Belushi up with enough anesthetics to get him through filming. See more »

Goofs

When Mystery Woman (Carrie Fisher) is doing her nails and reading military field manuals, the one she is reading is titled the M79 Flame Thrower. The M79 was a 40mm breech loading grenade launcher commonly used my the United States in Vietnam. The Flamethrower used was the M9-7 Flamethrower. Additionally, the Field Manual (FM 6-121) she is seen reading is actually for Field Artillery Target Acquisition, not a Flame Thrower. 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

As the film ends with the Blues Brothers and band playing "Jailhouse Rock", there are several cuts starting with the second verse that feature the castmembers who are professional singers singing lines of the song with their names on the screen. See more »

Connections

Featured in Everybody Hates Chris: Everybody Hates the Gout (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Theme from 'Rawhide'
(uncredited)
Written by Dimitri Tiomkin
Performed by the Blues Brothers and Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Nitro and Glycerin
15 August 2000 | by mcstackSee 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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