HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Booksmart
Prisoners
Beach Bum, The
Kill Ben Lyk
Into the Mirror
Support the Girls
Werewolf
Little Monsters
Spider-Man: Far from Home
Horrible Histories: The Movie - Rotten Romans
Pentathlon
Anna
Moulin Rouge
Ray & Liz
African Queen, The
Helen Morgan Story, The
Golem, Der
Yentl
Finishing Line, The
Triple Threat
Mysterious Castle in the Carpathians, The
Driven
Planet of the Dinosaurs
Gwen
Big Breadwinner Hog
Thunder Road
Moby Dick
Frankenstein's Great Aunt Tillie
Mad Room, The
Phantom of the Megaplex
Night Sitter, The
Child's Play
Power, The
Midsommar
After Midnight
Dolemite is My Name
Varda by Agnes
Toy Story 4
Master Z: Ip Man Legacy
Man Who Never Was, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Please Yourselves: Frankie Howerd and The House in Nightmare Park on Blu-ray
Cleesed Off: Clockwise on Blu-ray
Sorry I Missed You: Les Demoiselles de Rochefort on Blu-ray
Silliest of the Silly: Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 1 on Blu-ray
Protest Songs: Hair on Blu-ray
Peak 80s Schwarzenegger: The Running Man and Red Heat
Rock On: That'll Be the Day and Stardust on Blu-ray
Growing Up in Public: 7-63 Up on Blu-ray
Learn Your Craft: Legend of the Witches and Secret Rites on Blu-ray
70s Psycho-Thrillers! And Soon the Darkness and Fright on Blu-ray
Split: Stephen King and George A. Romero's The Dark Half on Blu-ray
Disney Post-Walt: Three Gamechangers
But Doctor, I Am Pagliacci: Tony Hancock's The Rebel and The Punch and Judy Man on Blu-ray
Once Upon a Time in Deadwood: Interview with Director Rene Perez
Shit-Eating Grim: Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom on Blu-ray
Stallone's 80s Action Alpha and Omega: Nighthawks and Lock Up
Python Prehistory: At Last the 1948 Show and Do Not Adjust Your Set on DVD
You Could Grow to Love This Place: Local Hero on Blu-ray
Anglo-American: Joseph Losey Blu-ray Double Bill - The Criminal and The Go-Between
Marvel's Least Loved and Most Loved: Fantastic 4 vs Avengers: Endgame
Battle of the Skeksis: The Dark Crystal Now and Then
American Madness: Sam Fuller's Shock Corridor and The Naked Kiss on Blu-ray
Flight of the Navigator and the 80s Futurekids
Trains and Training: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 13 on DVD
Holiday from Hell: In Bruges on Blu-ray
   
 
  Shake Rattle and Rock Don't Knock The RockBuy this film here.
Year: 1956
Director: Edward L. Cahn
Stars: Mike Connors, Lisa Gaye, Sterling Holloway, Douglas Dumbrille, Raymond Hatton, Margaret Dumont, Percy Helton, Paul Dubov, Charles Evans, Clarence Kolb, Fats Domino, Big Joe Turner, Tommy Charles
Genre: Musical, Comedy
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: A group of concerned citizens, led by Eustace Fentwick III (Douglas Dumbrille), are meeting to decide what to do about the new menace to society: rock 'n' roll. They watch the dancing on the local TV station's music show appalled, and make up their minds to form a pressure group to stop these concerts from going ahead, even if it means writing to Washington to do it. The presenter of the TV show is Gary Nelson (Mike Connors), a disk jockey who is all for the new movement, but his girlfriend June (Lisa Gaye) is the niece of pressure group members Mr and Mrs Fitzdingle (Raymond Hatton and Margaret Dumont), which puts them both in a very difficult position...

One of the many hastily produced movies to cash in on the rock 'n' roll craze of the fifties, Shake Rattle and Rock was scripted by Lou Rusoff. It reflected the opinions of the time, you were either for it or against it, it either contributed to the corruption of youth or it was a free spirited way for the kids to express themselves. Presumably Alan Freed wasn't available, so it's up to Nelson to persuade the moral guardians that there's nothing wrong with groovin' on the dancefloor to the latest sounds, who in this film include the legendary Fats Domino and Big Joe Turner.

One thing this movie has in its favour is the collection of character actors that fill the roles, putting a nice comedic spin on events. Standing out is Sterling Holloway, then in his fifties, as a hip-talking musician who digs the scene and serves as right hand man to Nelson. In the other corner, Dumont, famed for being the foil in the Marx Brothers comedies, is one of the busybodies, and behaving in just the same affronted way as in the thirties. As her onscreen husband, Hatton secretly likes the rock, and fires off a few long suffering lines at the expense of his cohorts. And let's not forget Percy Helton as a death-obsessed undertaker.

The controversy is brought to a head when Nelson televises a live concert featuring the three acts the producers booked for the film (incidentally, according to Nelson the man we've all been waiting for is Tommy Charles, but I think he'll find it's Fats Domino we wanted to see). The pressure group show up with a petition to get the concert halted, and the local gangsters, put out that the teens are now more interested in dancing than crime, incite the crowd to riot - or, at least, smash up Fentwick's car. The inference is that without the rock to burn off all that energy, the kids will turn to violence instead.

A trial is held to put Nelson behind bars when he refuses to give the police any names. This trial is staged in the TV studio, on live TV, so that demonstrations of rock music can be shown. Interestingly, Fentwick's objections to the dancing are shown to be racist when he compares them to African tribal displays, as if there were something wrong with that, but mostly this is a chance to poke fun at the squares. The teens have a clubhouse where they participate in arts and crafts, proving that they're decent citizens really, and Nelson's trump card is that all young people go through a rebellious phase, no matter what generation they belong to. Shake Rattle and Rock is harmless fun, with good music and some genuine laughs, as when Holloway takes the stand and his slang has to be subtitled! And check out what they substitute for "The End". Only in the fifties.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4753 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Edward L. Cahn  (1899 - 1963)

Hugely prolific, underrrated American director specialising in crime and sci-fi, who turned in some 120 B-movies over 30 years. Cahn began directing for Universal in 1930, and over the next two decades worked at most of the major studios, turning in films like Emergency Call, Main Street After Dark and I Cheated the Law.

In 1956, his efficient, economic style led him to Samuel Z. Arkoff’s American International Pictures where he turned in his best films, such as The She Creature, Invasion of the Saucer Men, Invisible Invaders and It! The Terror from Beyond Space (the latter two big influences on Night of the Living Dead and Alien).

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Enoch Sneed
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
  Rachel Franke
Paul Shrimpton
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: