HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Pusher
Pot Carriers, The
Black Bear
Don't Cry, Pretty Girls!
Portal
Me You Madness
Reckoning, The
Laddie: The Man Behind the Movies
For the Sake of Vicious
Hell Bent
Straight Shooting
Jules Verne's Rocket to the Moon
Man They Could Not Hang, The
Final Days
Frightened City, The
Assimilate
Sequin in a Blue Room
Common Crime, A
Into the Labyrinth
Power, The
Wake of Death
Night Orchid
Mortal
Iron Mask, The
Dinosaur
Personal History of David Copperfield, The
Dove, The
Collective
Charulata
Minari
Violation
Defending Your Life
Champagne Murders, The
He Dreams of Giants
Lost in America
Take Back
Honeydew
Banishing, The
Drifters, The
Gushing Prayer
   
 
Newest Articles
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
Network Double Bills: Some Girls Do and Deadlier Than the Male
Absolutely Bananas: Link on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
Adelphi Extras: Stars in Your Eyes on Blu-ray
Toons for the Heads: Fantastic Planet and Adult Animation
Nature Girl: The New World on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Perfect Friday and Robbery
   
 
  Rhythm and Blues Revue Rock All Night
Year: 1955
Director: Joseph Kohn
Stars: Lionel Hampton, Faye Adams, Bill Bailey, Herb Jeffries, Freddie Robinson, Amos Milburn, Sarah Vaughan, Count Basie, Big Joe Turner, Martha Davis, Nat 'King' Cole, Mantan Moreland, Nipsey Russell, Cab Calloway, Ruth Brown, Willie Bryant
Genre: Comedy, MusicBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Here's Willie Bryant to welcome you and introduce the evening's festivities, but before we get to the music there's a bit of business with comedian Freddie Robinson to take care of as he interrupts his opening spiel to ask him about the job he was supposed to get for him. Willie tells him there's a post on reception he could have, but he needs special skills, a lot like this woman here (Flo Robinson) who can read minds. Freddie has his doubts, but after Willie demonstrates successfully he does the same, then gets a slap in the face for his trouble...

I won't spoil the punchline, but suffice to say we were in vaudeville territory, with the items between the songs providing light relief to rockin' tunes from a variety of African American performers of 1954, some of whom had a great career behind them, some who would go on to greater success as the decade wore on, others who history has forgotten, leaving them to the aficionados to recall who they were and why they were awarded a spot in this cheap and cheerful revue show. It was one of a handful of such films made by Joseph Kohn around this time, and as the longest it was the best known.

Not that it was massively famous, but it proved entertaining for all the right reasons for those who were keen to give it a go. Bryant, a regular Master of Ceremonies at such theatrical shows (though the audience here was strictly stock footage), slickly introduced the acts and indulged in comedy sketches of the sort that one imagines had been passed down for generations such was their well-worn tone. The music offered the best reason to watch (or listen), but it was still interesting to see comics like Nipsey Russell, a few years away from his big break on classic sitcom Car 54, Where are You? and subsequent U.S. T.V. ubiquity, who was on the way up, and Mantan Moreland, whose by now stereotypical persona was well on the way out, on the way down.

It should be noted Mantan's routine here was pretty funny, so his renaissance in the next decade was deserved as people got to appreciate him once again. But music was the main attraction, just on the cusp of rock 'n' roll's domination of pop culture, making it all the more interesting to see Big Joe Turner's version of Shake, Rattle and Roll before Bill Hailey and the Comets covered it and made it a huge hit. However, it was not all modern (for 1954 when this was filmed) tunes, as the likes of Count Basie appeared as well to deliver some smooth big band jazz, although looking at him you might have expected a bigger orchestra than the one which appears with him here.

Most of the acts got to do one song, though Lionel Hampton's band did two (as did Count Basie's), the second one a very odd tune with electric organ and harem girl dancing, though Hampton looked as if he was thoroughly enjoying himself. Much respected names like Sarah Vaughan and Nat 'King' Cole didn't do all time classics here, the latter simply singing a Trinidad ditty accompanied only by a tom-tom, a far cry from his slick crooning at the piano in suit and tie you may be more familiar with. There were also a couple of tap dancers, one of whom, Bill Bailey (not the British comedian, obviously), performs the "Moonwalk" many years before Michael Jackson or Jeffrey Daniel for that matter. Somewhat inevitably, Cab Calloway turned up to offer us Minnie the Moocher, but just as much amusement could be garnered from the less recognisable acts such as Amos Milburn with one of his trademark booze-related songs. No masterpiece, then, but if you like the music, you'd be captivated.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1487 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
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 probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
Stately Wayne Manor
   

 

Last Updated: