The Jolson Story Reviews
Far too much poetic license is taken with the plot, to the point that after a while you wonder if anything you saw is true. the biggest example of this is the implication that Jolson was first married, to Julie Benson, around the time he made The Jazz Singer (1927). He did get married, to Ruby Keeler, in 1928, but this was his third marriage! Wouldn't want to ruin the "hero eventually meets his perfect one after putting his career first and much disappointment, dating-wise" plot you figured would work on audiences, would you now, Hollywood?
I guess the fact that her name was changed should be a clue that this is a work of fiction...
The "happily ever after" ending was also fictional, as they divorced in 1940, six years before the movie was made.
On the positive side, some good music and stage performances.
On that note, Larry Parks is kind of hit-and-miss as Al Jolson. His stage performances are good, and seem to portray well the larger-than-life, complete entertainer nature of Al Jolson. However, in the off-stage scenes he comes across as overbearing, overly energetic, phony and downright irritating.
If you are interested in the correct history of Al Jolson, don't watch this. Watch a History Channel documentary instead, or just read Wikipedia.
huge impact on my life growing up--and have always loved it --larry parks was brilliant at miming jolson--even though jolson himself gave him a bad time on set