Duke Ellington: Reminiscing in Tempo (2006)

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Filmmaker Gary Keys crafts a compelling tribute to late jazz icon Duke Ellington in this companion piece to Keys' 1980 documentary Memories of Duke, which combines unseen clips captured during the famed pianist and bandleader's 1968 Mexican tour with footage and interviews shot at sister Ruth Ellington's annual birthday celebration. Though fans know well that the man known as Duke never celebrated his own birthday, ever since his death in 1974 sister Ruth has made up for lost time by hosting an annual gathering in which friends, family, and former bandmates all gather for a yearly birthday bull session. In addition to offering a closer look at the beloved jazz master, this lovingly-crafted documentary also features an original suite that was never commercially recorded.

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Critic Reviews for Duke Ellington: Reminiscing in Tempo

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (3)

This documentary about Duke Ellington is too meandering to be of much use to the uninitiated, but Ellington fans will be grateful for the vintage film clips.

Dec 14, 2006 | Rating: 3/5

Keys's tribute to a tribute is a charming riff on an epic figure.

Dec 12, 2006

Messily affectionate.

Dec 21, 2006 | Full Review…

This puff piece is shapeless, repetitive and feels much longer than it is.

Dec 15, 2006 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Reminiscing in Tempo is simply not in sync with its subject matter.

Nov 30, 2006 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

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