The Jazz Singer (1952) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Jazz Singer (1952)

The Jazz Singer




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Movie Info

This second screen adaptation of the Samson Rafaelson play The Jazz Singer is better than the first, though not as historically important (the early Jazz Singer, it will be recalled, sparked the "talkie revolution" way back in 1927). Danny Thomas assumes the old Al Jolson role as the cantor's son-turned-cabaret entertainer. As Jerry Golding (Thomas) scales the heights of show business, he breaks the heart of his father (Eduard Franz), who'd hoped that Jerry would follow in his footsteps. Sorrowfully, Cantor Golding reads the Kaddish service, indicating that, so far as he is concerned, his son is dead. A tearful reconciliation (and a more upbeat denouement than was found in the original film) occurs when Jerry dutifully returns to sing the "Kol Nidre" in his ailing father's absence. Peggy Lee co-stars as Judy Lane, a musical comedy entertainer who falls in love with Jerry, while Mildred Dunnock and Alex Gerry do what they can with the stereotyped roles of Jerry's mother and uncle, respectively. This 1952 Jazz Singer has its faults, but it is vastly superior to the empty-headed 1980 Neil Diamond/Laurence Olivier remake.more
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Musical & Performing Arts, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Frank Davis, Leonard Stern, Lewis Meltzer, Leonard B. Stern
Warner Bros.


Danny Thomas
as Jerry Golding
Peggy Lee
as Judy Lane
Mildred Dunnock
as Mrs. Golding
Eduard Franz
as Cantor Golding
Tom Tully
as McGurney
Alex Gerry
as Uncle Louie
Allyn Joslyn
as George Miller
Harold Gordon
as Rabbi Roth
Hal Ross
as Joseph
Justin Smith
as Phil Stevens
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for The Jazz Singer

Critic Reviews for The Jazz Singer

All Critics (2) | Top Critics (2)

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

Full Review… | August 8, 2006
New York Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Jazz Singer


Hokey but colorful. Danny Thomas wasn't much of an actor but he sang well enough, what matters more is that Peggy Lee is in the movie and sings several songs. That makes whatever malarkey you have to sit through worth it.

jay nixon

Super Reviewer

This 1952 updating of the 1927 sound introducing original is a bland and forgettable film. Danny Thomas does his best, but he doesn't ever really land the role in my opinion. Everything about this film is forgettable and so tame it hurts. The idea that this film and the awful "White Christmas" were directed by the same man who made the incredible "Casablanca". I guess you can't polish a turd of a script. See the historically significant original over this dragged out bland version from the 50s.

Ken Scheck

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