The Blues Brothers
The Blues Brothers is a 1980 American musical comedy film produced by Robert K. Weiss, directed by John Landis and written by Dan Aykroyd and John Landis. It stars the late John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd, along with cameos from various musicians, such as James Brown, Aretha Franklin and Ray Charles, and was the first movie based on a sketch from Saturday Night Live.
Elwood Blues (Dan Aykroyd) takes his brother and music partner, "Joliet" Jake Blues (John Belushi), who was released from prison, to visit sister Mary Stigmata, also known as the Penguin (Kathleen Freeman), at the Saint Helen of the Blessed Shroud Orphanage in Calumet City, where Jake and Elwood grew up. The Penguin tells Jake and Elwood that their childhood orphanage is going to be demolished unless they give her $5,000 to pay off the taxes. However, due to Jake and Elwood being convicted felons, the Penguin does not trust them when they offered to help and kicks them out, telling them not to return until they redeem themselves. After getting some help from their surrogate father Curtis (Cab Calloway) and a revelation at the Triple Rock Baptist Church, Jake and Elwood are sent out on a mission from God to get their band back together and raise enough money legitimately to save the orphanage from closing down, all while being pursued by the cops.
Why It Rocks
- A simple, timeless plot.
- John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd have great chemistry as Jake and Elwood.
- Very catchy soundtrack, including the covers of "Jailhouse Rock" and the theme from Rawhide, as well as some original songs, like "Shake Your Tail Feather" and "Everybody Needs Somebody to Love".
- Lots of funny scenes, like the Penguin slapping Jake and Elwood with a ruler after they swear in front of her, their visit to Chez Paul, and the mystery woman attempting to blow Jake and Elwood up in a telephone booth.
- Epic car chase scenes, like in the shopping mall and when Jake and Elwood approach Chicago during the climax.
- Despite the Bluesmobile looking like it could fall apart at any moment, it managed to be surprisingly sturdy throughout the film, and it became one of the most iconic movie cars.
- There are a few unlikable characters, such as the mystery woman played by Carrie Fisher, as well as the Illinois Nazis, although it was intentional in the latter case.
- The movie had a bad sequel titled Blues Brothers 2000.
- At the time of its release, The Blues Brothers held the record for having the most cars wrecked in a movie, at 103 cars, which was broken by its sequel, Blues Brothers 2000, which had 104 cars wrecked.