1943, Musical, 1h 17m41 Reviews 1,000+ Ratings
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Stormy Weather's depiction of the Black community is disappointingly facile, but its delightful musical numbers drown out any missed narrative notes. Read critic reviews
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One of the Shadracks (uncredited)
The other Shadrack (uncredited)
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Critic Reviews for Stormy Weather
Plot doesn't matter a hoot in this lively, likable picture.
The hottest thing in town.January 28, 2021 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
Really, the only thing to do is to sit back and enjoy yourself. The cast of Stormy Weather will see to that.
Nicholas Brothers, whose prodigious leaps ending in splits are almost incredible, prove real show-stoppers.
The Nicholas Brothers have done astonishing work in earlier pictures, but even at that, their stair-step, leap-frog splits brought gasps and a round of applause at the preview.
The outstanding performance of this or any other film of its kind is the sensational dance act of the Nicholas Brothers. I won't attempt to describe it; but is worth the price of admission in itself.
Audience Reviews for Stormy Weather
Feb 01, 2017This film is full of joy and a real celebration of African-American entertainment in 1943. The premise is that Bill 'Bojangles' Robinson is looking back on a life in entertainment, and as he reminisces, we see one brilliant performance after another from a galaxy of stars. There's Robinson himself, of course, who at age 65 dances infectiously throughout the movie, but my favorites were his 'sand dance' on a riverboat, and his tap dancing on giant bongos. I loved seeing Fats Waller performing 'That Ain't Right' with Ada Brown, and then 'Ain't Misbehaving', his eyebrows all a-twitter. There's Lena Horne singing the title song, 'Stormy Weather' with a great segue to an imagined scene out the window which featured the stylish and sultry dancing of Katherine Dunham and her troupe (which reminded me of the Gene Kelly/Cyd Charisse number 12 years later in 'Singin' in the Rain'). The high-octane Cab Calloway and his orchestra play 'Jumpin' Jive', which included an amazing dance sequence by the Nicholas Brothers, who leap high and land in so many splits you wonder how their bodies can possibly take it. And those are just the highlights - this film is jam packed in its 78 minutes, with numbers that demonstrate stunning creativity and musicality. There are a few stereotypes which sneak in, including comedians in blackface, but those elements are small, and the spirit of the movie soars. It may have less plot development, less nuance in its characters, and less polish than white musicals at the time, and could be rightly criticized as reducing its African-American stars to 'just entertainers'. On the other hand, this was the state of America at the time, the movie represents a step forward, and I was very happy for what I did see, instead of disheartened for what I did not. Perhaps thought of another way, the entertainers' performances are so brilliant they transcend the narrow framework they're placed in, exploding off the screen. How sad it is that Fats Waller would die just a few months after its release, and that this would be Robinson's last film, but how wonderful that all of these performances were captured in this beautiful little movie.Antonius B Super Reviewer
Jul 12, 2012while 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.Stella D Super Reviewer
Sep 05, 2010This movie has a good story, but I didn't like how it ended. Most of the movie is singing, anyway. Overall, it's okay.Aj V Super Reviewer
May 18, 2010I'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.Jennifer D Super Reviewer
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