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The Jazz Singer

The Jazz Singer (1927)


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Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 4
Fresh: 3 | Rotten: 1



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Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 4,337

My Rating

Movie Info

On the verge of receivership in 1926, Warner Bros. studio decides to risk its future by investing in the Vitaphone sound system. Warners' first Vitaphone release, Don Juan, was a silent film accompanied by music and sound effects. The studio took the Vitaphone process one step farther in its 1927 adaptation of the Samson Raphaelson Broadway hit The Jazz Singer, incorporating vocal musical numbers in what was essentially a non-talking film. Al Jolson stars as Jakie Rabinowitz, the son of Jewish

Oct 16, 2007

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All Critics (26) | Top Critics (4) | Fresh (19) | Rotten (7) | DVD (8)

In cities where the Vitaphone can be installed and reproduce his voice this picture will eminently repay attendance.

July 28, 2008 Full Review Source: TIME Magazine
TIME Magazine
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Undoubtedly the best thing Vitaphone has ever put on the screen.

July 22, 2008 Full Review Source: Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The Vitaphoned songs and some dialogue have been introduced most adroitly.

March 25, 2006 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's ragged and dull until the magical moment when Jolson turns to the camera to announce, 'You ain't heard nothin' yet' -- a line so loaded with unconscious irony that it still raises a few goose bumps.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader | Comment (1)
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A film whose appeal is almost solely historical, for a multitude of reasons.

May 3, 2014 Full Review Source: Antagony & Ecstasy
Antagony & Ecstasy

The Jazz Singer is not a good picture artistically, but it's historically significant and Al Johnson is truly entertaining

February 21, 2012 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com

The Jazz Singer is a shallow attempt by a powerful group of straying Jews to clear their consciences.

July 20, 2009 Full Review Source:

By today's standards, The Jazz Singer is mawkish, crudely filmed, and full of schmaltz. Yet it remains fascinating in its historical value, not only for its technical innovation.

July 28, 2008 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

An overrated cinematic turd, and an embarrassment to Jazz.

July 12, 2008

There's one thing that neither Neil Diamond nor Danny Thomas nor even Jerry Lewis had in their versions: the unrivaled showmanship and charisma of Al Jolson.

November 17, 2007 Full Review Source:

...there's no taking away from the movie's heart and Jolson's singing. The Jazz Singer remains a classic of its kind.

October 14, 2007 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

The Broadway melodrama is schmaltzy, but the music thank God is heavenly.

May 3, 2006 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Three quarters of a century later, viewing 'The Jazz Singer' is perhaps a historical curiosity to many. It is an insult to overly sensitive others.

October 15, 2004 Full Review
Kansas City Kansan

Must-see for any film buff.

January 27, 2004 Full Review Source:

A landmark: the first sound film in which dialogue and song caught the public's imagination, even though sound had long existed and much of this film is silent.

May 24, 2003 Full Review Source: Film4

Utterly unremarkable; its milestone status is more historical fluke than genuine artistry.

January 14, 2003
Flipside Movie Emporium

Sincere and important, if a little self-aware, look at being Jewish in a way other movies of the time weren't touching.

November 25, 2002 Full Review Source: Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

Warner Bros.' The Jazz Singer (1927) is an historic milestone film and cinematic landmark. [Most people associate this film with the advent of sound pictures.]

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Tim Dirks' The Greatest Films
Tim Dirks' The Greatest Films

Audience Reviews for The Jazz Singer

Hoary old chestnut that should be seen for its historical significance, aside from that its the ripest kind of melodrama. Overwrought acting, clutched bosoms, fevered declamations, the works are on display here. Do keep an eye out for a young Myrna Loy, just starting out, as a chorus girl.
April 27, 2012
jay nixon

Super Reviewer

Starring Al Jolson as the title character, THE JAZZ SINGER is much more than just the first full-length feature with sound.
September 11, 2011

Super Reviewer

An amazing film for its time! I feel awestruck that THIS was the first ever feature length film to include synchronised sound. The narrative and themes are universal and still relevant today, 80 years on. I feel that this would have been even better if they were able to implement sound for the whole film. A beautiful film with beautiful performances. Some people wouldn't be able to look past the fact that it's mostly silent and in black and white, but I'm so glad I was able to do that and experience this film. They didn't just make a random, awful and totally pointless film to add the sound to, they made something worthwhile something where the sound was secondary to the narrative and that's what makes this even more momentous and inspiring. A fantastic chunk of history.
May 12, 2011

Super Reviewer

Finally after years of hearing about this movie and seeing clips from it in historical film documentaries, I finally watched it! And I really liked it too! The story is universal and still applies today, Jolson was great as the Jewish cantor's son who wanted to be a jazz singer instead of a cantor like his father. Of course this movie is famous for having bits of dialogue spoken, which is spoken during the song sequences. This device is both really cool and makes you wish the whole movie were a talky, but it also is kinda annoying at times too, as the transitions are a bit awkward. Overall, I really liked this movie, though.
December 9, 2010

Super Reviewer

    1. Jakie Rabinowitz (Jack Robin): Wait a minute, wait a minute. You ain't heard nothing yet!
    – Submitted by Dutch E (17 months ago)
    1. Jakie Rabinowitz (Jack Robin): Wait a minute, wait a minute. You ain't haerd nothin' yet!
    – Submitted by Tyler C (3 years ago)
View all quotes (2)

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