15 Jamming Jazz Movies Films
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15 Jamming Jazz Movies

Jazz has been around longer than rock, hip hop, rhythm and blues, reggae and a lot of other tune styles so it’s great to see how the Smithsonian Institute every year promotes April as Jazz Appreciation Month. It seems to be one of those kinds of music that people either love or hate, or go from neutral where it’s concerned to acquiring a nonstop taste for it. It’s become such a butt-kicking powerful tradition that loads of books, films, and world-class events have been inspired by it. A lot of movies use jazz as background music but these could be called heavy hitters that give you people who made and lived the music. This list is some of the better ones I’ve found so far but I’m leaving it open for added suggestions. It contains feature films and a few documentaries.

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  1. 13

    This is one of the best biopics on a jazz great that anybody might ever want to check out. The love and passion that director Charlotte Zwerin had for her subject is obvious. 90 Minutes of straight-up bliss.

  2. 14

    If you like So You Think You Can Dance or any of the hit STEP UP movies, you wanna check out these jazz-dancing originals.

  3. 15

    "Stormy Weather" is a major classic with Fats Waller, Cab Calloway, and gorgeous Lena Horne delivering sweet Golden-age Hollywood tunes for the masses.

  4. 16

    Not one of Alman's best, though it does feature a menacing turn by Harry Belafonte as a gangster, the music is outstanding...including Fathead Newman, Joshua Redman, Ron Carter, Cyrus Chestnut and many more contemporary (at least in 1996) jazz giants.

  5. 17

    Another Woody Allen film, this salute to self-aggrandizing, fictional jazz guitarist Emmet Ray is light and funny and features some killer jazz guitar songs (including a few nodes to the celebrated career of Django Reinhardt.)

  6. 18

    Rob Marshall's big-screen adaptation of the long-running stage play brings the Jazz Age to colorful new life.

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