Stanley's Gig (2000) Poster

(2000)

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9/10
A sweet surprise
jlittlefield10 July 2001
A slow starter, well worth hanging on to the end, Stanley's Gig is a beautiful, understated story of redemption, full of quiet humor and amusingly real characters. William Sanderson, an actor with a memorable voice and a forgettable face, was perfect as Stanley, a recovering alcoholic who has wasted much of his life, but finds his talent as a ukulele-playing music therapist at a drab Los Angeles nursing home. Marla Gibbs, as Eleanor, was equally effective as an aged jazz singer who reclaims her past. Faye Dunaway, in an uncharacteristically unglamorous role, plays Stanley's friend and another recovering alcoholic. The plot is thin, but it is not the plot that matters. Stanley, in his quirky way, brings pride to Eleanor's memories of her past and at the same time finds his way late in life. The reward is well worth the journey.
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Unique interesting movie
vaallen23 August 2004
I always look for cute, interesting movies on Sundays. This is one of the best. The title character - Stanley is a quirky guy who plays the ukulele and sings. He needs a job and finds one as the recreational therapist at a retirement home. All of the characters have their own story which this movie tells each story in their own way and ties up any lose ends by the end of the movie - one of my personal pet peeves is don't introduce a storyline you aren't prepared to complete. Anyway, the acting is good - loved Marla Gibbs she was so good that you really didn't see Marla Gibbs - she was Elenor Whitney. The ukulele music was right in tune with the quirky movie, but the blues music sung by Marla Gibbs was sublime. Well worth watching a couple of times.
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10/10
This movie made me cry like baby and smile at the same time
lizrich15129 December 2002
Stanley's Gig is one of the most unexpectedly moving and endearing films in a long while. So unpretentious that you could go right past it, but just stay with it a while and it unfolds in unexpected and marvelous ways. William Sanderson is a barely functional recovering alcoholic ukulele player who stumbles into a job as a musical therapist in an old age home. He so perfectly controls the movie in a quirky, shy way that the movie seems like dropping into a slice of real life.

Marla Gibbs has power and dignity without even speaking and a wonderful speaking and singing voice once she deigns to honor us with words. Faye Dunaway has a compassionate but small supporting role that does her proud.

Stanley's Gig is a gift of an hour and a half that will transform your heart for a while. What a joy to discover such a gem.
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10/10
A welcome break
Chuffin17 August 2004
After seeing so many Hollywood blockbusters you get drawn in and think that they're great films, with great direction, great acting, great special effects... but then you watch a film like Stanley's Gig, and it snaps you out of it... Bill Sanderson is excellent as a mentally unfit ukulele player, who lands a job as "Recreation Therapist" for an elderly home with the dream of playing on a cruise ship... Stanley (Bill Sanderson) manages a "breakthrough" at work with an old retired jazz singer, Eleanor Whitney (Marla Gibbs) who seems to want to forget her past, he befriends the elderly woman and finds where she once performed and attempts to set-up a gig for her to sing again. This film is an excellent film and deserves more recognition. The Characters are finely detailed and portrayed even better, it's a very free-flowing film despite needing patience to catch on. I can find no faults except with the occasional slow bit during the film, and i would rate it very highly and grab a copy tomorrow!
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9/10
A rewarding surprise and a great performance.
jfcolet2 September 2003
William Sanderson is not a name that people immediately recognize, but in this little film, Mr. Sanderson does an outstanding performance that held my attention. So many cliches in this film but so well done that one can readily forgive its predictability. It's not a matter of what is done, but just how well it's done. I looked at this film by chance, but I shall not forget it.
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10/10
A gem of a film
Kimberlyjeana9 August 2003
I am so glad I caught this in Black Starz this weekend. A beautiful story about the things that are really important in life. And it asks the ? Is what you really want - what you really want? Sometimes you can back into what you were born to do.

If you get a chance see this movie.
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10/10
a wonderful, moving movie.
jhogan762121 July 2000
Please go see this film. It is what movies used to be in the golden age of cinema. Simple, moving, a joy. The performances are award winning. And I heard the movie was done for less then $600,000.00. Wow! The music alone makes this movie worth seeing. A pure film from start to finish.
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See it anyway.
jtur884 July 2002
This was not a great movies. It wasn't even a really good one. But see it, anyway. William Sanderson is a character that you will never forget, and he plays the role with impeccable perfection. Forget about the defects in the film and the other characters who are less than great. Just sit back, with no expectations of anything great, and let Sanderson walk you through a nice but very simple story.
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