The Cotton Club

OK, I'm cheating here. Head over to Wikipedia and it plainly says that The Cotton Club was released in December 1984, but, as I've already watched a film from 1984 (the rather lovely A Private Function) I thought I'd date this one from the time I probably first saw it in London back in 1985 (I've decided to date this correctly because it was getting confused and messy... I now have two from 1984 and a different one from 1985!). I have vague memories of having quite enjoyed it... but I didn't this time.

Here's why it should have been good

  1. Francis Ford Coppola making a gangster film, which he'd done pretty well a couple of times before
  2. Mario Puzo, who wrote The Godfather co-wrote this with Coppola
  3. John Barry did the music
  4. It had dancing
  5. Bob Hoskins and Fred Gwynne

Here's why it wasn't

  1. The film was dingy, cliched and tired, shot off into ridiculous songs ocasionally
  2. Nothing made you think it had the same pedigree as The Godfather, and often felt like a cheap knock-off
  3. The music was often dull, average at best and worse, sometimes un-noticeable, it felt like jazz-by-numbers
  4. The dancing was pretty good when it happened but sometimes felt shoehorned in
  5. Richard Gere and Nicholas Cage (I know! Two Nic Cage films! Who'd have thought!)

Hoskins was fine - but the only real joy in the film was seeing Fred Gwynne playing Herman Gangster... and saying "fuck."

And lets face it, I suspect Richard Gere lies in bed dreaming of being as good looking as Fred Gwynne!

The Standells appeared in an episode of The Munsters (covering The Beatles), sadly that's poorly served on YouTube with just a Spanish dub ... so instead here's they are playing Dirty Water

... and here's a record of The Inmates doing the London version...

50 films and 50 albums