Stormy Weather - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Stormy Weather Reviews

Page 1 of 4
rubystevens
Super Reviewer
July 12, 2012
while it's certainly a white fantasy of black life in 1943 (where racism didn't exist) it stars many of the greatest entertainers of the 30s and 40s. bill robinson was already 65 when this was made; lena horne was an up and coming 26. of course their relationship was completely desexualized and the plot was just an excuse for musical numbers anyway. but it's hard to beat fats waller, cab calloway in a zoot suit and the fabulous nicholas brothers.
Super Reviewer
September 5, 2010
This movie has a good story, but I didn't like how it ended. Most of the movie is singing, anyway. Overall, it's okay.
MeetMeinMontauk
Super Reviewer
May 18, 2010
I've seen a lot of dance movies, but I have got to say that the end routine in this film just blows them all out of the water. It's phenomenal! The story here is pretty thin, but since when does anyone watch a musical for story? As blasphemous as this may be, it's a pity they didn't film in Technicolor. It would have popped fantastically. Still, entertainment in one of it's purest forms.
Super Reviewer
February 6, 2008
In the early 1940s "Uncle" Bill Williamson (Robinson) is sitting with some neighborhood kids in Hollywood when a theatre magazine arrives celebrating 25 years of African American music. Bill was present for all of it, so we flashback to him as a soldier returning from WWI and get a glimpse of the changing landscape of music for black performers over the previous quarter-century. Bill, his buddy Gabe (Dooley Wilson), and Selina, the girl he wants to make a life with (Lena Horne), carry the show exceptionally. Fats Waller, Cab Calloway, and The Nicholas Brothers give signature performances as well. Some songs and dances like the Cakewalk and the African jungle number show the inherent racism in show-business of that era even though no white characters appear to put up obstacles to these black characters achieving success. This movie treats us to two especially unique experiences. First, The Shadracks was a vaudeville comic duo who do a routine around a broke down jalopy. They demonstrate that even African American performers wore blackface as a mask that was acceptable to white audiences. Second, Katherine Dunham and Her Troupe do a balletic routine as a bridge in Lena Horne's performance of the title song Stormy Weather. This reminded me of Gene Kelly's balletic breaks in films from ten years later, and made me wonder if this could be the origin. I have not seen Cabin in the Sky yet from this same year. Were there other films from this time period that had fantasy dance numbers like this, or is this in fact the inspiration for those later movies that were beloved by the Academy? Great entertainment with rare opportunities to see black stars of this era own the screen.
½ June 22, 2015
A once-in-a-lifetime cast stuck in a typical Fox backstage musical; many pleasures to be had, nevertheless, including Fats Waller singing "Ain't Misbehavin'," Cab Calloway with the Nicholas Brothers performing "Jumpin' Jive," Bill Robinson's wonderful dancing and Lena Horne's beautiful rendition of the title song.
July 19, 2011
Not so great plot, legendary music. The songs and dances are performed by people who shaped what they did; Fats Waller, Cab Calloway, Lena Horne, Bill Robinson, (who got the not so easily accomplished achievement of greatest dancer of all time crowned by none of other then Fred Astaire himself.) etc.
August 27, 2007
The plot may be thin in this all-black musical, but instead it focuses on big budget numbers featuring some of the hottest acts of the time. And what performances they give! Lena Horne, Bill "Bojangles" Robinson and Fats Waller are stunning, but the absolute highlight is the finale. It truly begins with Horne's emotional rendition of "Stormy Weather", but heats up when Cab Calloway takes the stage, along with the brilliant Nicholas Brothers. This number features some of the best foot work ever to grace the screen, and coming from a huge Gene Kelly fan like myself, that's saying a lot. The song, "Jumpin' Jive", will make you want to do just that!
November 7, 2009
The story is rather ordinary, but the music - that?s something else. Imaginative musical numbers, nicely produced and the talent involved is remarkable and truly amazing. One of the best musicals from the 1940?s.
November 7, 2009
The story is rather ordinary, but the music - that?s something else. Imaginative musical numbers, nicely produced and the talent involved is remarkable and truly amazing. One of the best musicals from the 1940?s.
July 20, 2009
A few fabulous performances elevate this from the hokum it aspires to be. Fats Waller should be on camera about ten times as often as he is. Lena Horne, while truly mesmerizing in the title tune, is pretty humdrum elsewhere. And Robinson, alas, has lost a step or two. What a pity that he wasn't captured in his prime.
June 29, 2009
I'm tempted to give this five stars just for Fats Waller's "Ain't Misbehavin'" and most of all the Nicholas Brothers unfriginbelievably great show-stopper. There's not a lot to complain about talent wise. And at an hour-seventeen minutes it moves along at a brisk enough pace that its easy to overlook the clunky storytelling.
September 25, 2008
i rate this movie 5 stars because it's in black and white film but yet still so good....everybody was so tallented....a real good musical...clean and fun to watch....an oldie but goodie...some would say those were the good old days.....you got good singing and dancing......a great combination.....did i mention tap dancing.....they used to get down back in the day....i always enjoyed watching these type of movies....one of the quotes i liked in this movie.....whatcha know pops....give me some skins....this was a great cast....all african americans....i give them their props.....because they earned them.....the cast played in this movie also directed this movie...talents and skills.....
½ May 24, 2008
On the downside, this is an American film with an all-black cast made in 1943, so sadly, there are some segments of "Stormy Weather" that are pretty condescending. But thankfully, they are few and far between and the bulk of the film is jam-packed with some most excellent jazz numbers and ritzy dance numbers becoming of any first-rate MGM musical. The Nicholas Brothers really do steal the film with their tap number, which gives Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire a run for their money. I can't tell you how much fun it is to watch this film. Highly recommended.
February 20, 2008
I love these movies. This was when Movies were REALLY good. The voice and the grace of Lena. Cab doing his thing. WOW what an adventure
December 10, 2007
Wow! Great musical! The story on this one is really incidental, it's the performances that you'll really want to see. And they are amazing performances. Lena Horne is stunning, Bill Robinson is great, Cab Calloway and Fats Waller are joys to watch and listen to. But it's the Nicholas Brothers who absolutely steal the show. Their dance number is truly a grand finale. I actually clapped for them when they were done, it was that amazing.
½ June 2, 2007
Amazing as a history of the evolution of dance in the 20th century, specifically African-American dance. Bill Bojangles, Katherine Dunham, and the Nicholson Brothers!!! The plot is kind of lame, but who's watching this for the plot?
March 11, 2016
STORMY WEATHER is a very unique film in a few respects. Given the time period it was made in, having an all-Black cast was probably pretty rare. It also affords a look at Black entertainers that few other films of the time had done. Still, there are extremely racist depictions that might not sit well with modern audiences. That aside, though, STORMY WEATHER has some amazing musical and dance numbers which may be enough to make you temporarily forget how much of a minstrel show the film really is. My personal favorites were Lena Horne's opening number "No Two Ways About Love," the title song, and "Jumpin' Jive," which has some of the best dancing ever recorded on film, courtesy of the Nicholas Brothers. The plot is nothing to write home about, but in a lot of ways, that really isn't the point. It's a showcase of Black talent, for better or worse (there is a scene where two characters put on blackface for a very racist/stereotypical vaudeville sketch), and talent on display is top-notch.
Super Reviewer
February 6, 2008
In the early 1940s "Uncle" Bill Williamson (Robinson) is sitting with some neighborhood kids in Hollywood when a theatre magazine arrives celebrating 25 years of African American music. Bill was present for all of it, so we flashback to him as a soldier returning from WWI and get a glimpse of the changing landscape of music for black performers over the previous quarter-century. Bill, his buddy Gabe (Dooley Wilson), and Selina, the girl he wants to make a life with (Lena Horne), carry the show exceptionally. Fats Waller, Cab Calloway, and The Nicholas Brothers give signature performances as well. Some songs and dances like the Cakewalk and the African jungle number show the inherent racism in show-business of that era even though no white characters appear to put up obstacles to these black characters achieving success. This movie treats us to two especially unique experiences. First, The Shadracks was a vaudeville comic duo who do a routine around a broke down jalopy. They demonstrate that even African American performers wore blackface as a mask that was acceptable to white audiences. Second, Katherine Dunham and Her Troupe do a balletic routine as a bridge in Lena Horne's performance of the title song Stormy Weather. This reminded me of Gene Kelly's balletic breaks in films from ten years later, and made me wonder if this could be the origin. I have not seen Cabin in the Sky yet from this same year. Were there other films from this time period that had fantasy dance numbers like this, or is this in fact the inspiration for those later movies that were beloved by the Academy? Great entertainment with rare opportunities to see black stars of this era own the screen.
½ June 22, 2015
A once-in-a-lifetime cast stuck in a typical Fox backstage musical; many pleasures to be had, nevertheless, including Fats Waller singing "Ain't Misbehavin'," Cab Calloway with the Nicholas Brothers performing "Jumpin' Jive," Bill Robinson's wonderful dancing and Lena Horne's beautiful rendition of the title song.
February 5, 2009
Other reviews have said it best....very thin story - almost non-existent. But, the closing number by Cab Calloway and the Nicholas Brothers is mind blowingly good!
Page 1 of 4