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It's Time We Revisit 1979's "All That Jazz"

I watched it again on TCM the other night, and 42 years later, I think it's still a near masterpiece.

What I loved about it:

- Roy Scheider's performance. I think he deserved the Oscar.

- The incredible choreography and dancing.

- The cinematography and art direction.

- "Autumn," the hot dancer in the jockstrap in the "Air-Rotica" number.

It's also the movie that salvaged Jessica Lange's film career, which was nearly over after King Kong.

What are your thoughts on this classic?

by Anonymousreply 178January 21, 2022 7:54 AM

Hated it! Ugh.

by Anonymousreply 1December 16, 2021 3:34 PM

Welcome to AirOTICA!

by Anonymousreply 2December 16, 2021 3:38 PM

The only part of the movie I didn't like was Leland Palmer, who played Scheider's ex-wife (a thinly veiled version of Gwen Verdon).

I thought she was a terrible actress, so over the top. In the scene where she tells Scheider she thinks the Air Rotica number is the best work he's ever done, she does this phony crying thing and says, "You son of a bitch," then runs off sobbing. That scene would have been so much more effective if she downplayed it and just said, "You son of a bitch" unemotionally and straightforwardly, then just stared at him.

She was all wrong for the role. Who was she, anyway? This is the last movie she ever made. I assume she was a Broadway dancer who had had some kind of relationship with Fosse, which is how she got cast.

by Anonymousreply 3December 16, 2021 3:41 PM

I saw this movie in the theater when I was in high school, and that Air Rotica number with all the guys in jockstraps entwined in each other made me really horny.

by Anonymousreply 4December 16, 2021 3:42 PM

Did scheider do his own dancing? Remind me. I forget though I liked the film.

by Anonymousreply 5December 16, 2021 3:49 PM

Me, too R4. I had no idea dancing could be so sexy. I remember getting hard in the theater, I was so glad it was dark...

I also think the movie is a masterpiece and a real love-letter to Broadway in late 70s.

by Anonymousreply 6December 16, 2021 3:49 PM

"I think it's still a near masterpiece."

Nothing "near" about it; it is a masterpiece (MARY!). It's so funny to me when morons say things like, "The Airotica scene is so tacky and stupid and bad", as if that wasn't the point.

Anyway, Scheider wuz robbed. Also, Ben Vereen and Ann Reinking deserved supporting nominations AT LEAST.

by Anonymousreply 7December 16, 2021 3:52 PM

R5 Scheider didn't really dance in the movie.

by Anonymousreply 8December 16, 2021 3:55 PM

R7 I call it a "near masterpiece" only because of the presence of Leland Palmer. Every scene she's in diminishes the movie.

by Anonymousreply 9December 16, 2021 3:56 PM

[quote]"The Airotica scene is so tacky and stupid and bad", as if that wasn't the point.

Was that the point of the movie too? And all this time I thought it was unintentional.

by Anonymousreply 10December 16, 2021 3:59 PM

I saw it in high school and never got the whole flirting with Jessica Lange as angel of death thing until later. I loved it though.

by Anonymousreply 11December 16, 2021 4:00 PM

Ann Reinking's legs were as long as a giraffe's. Her dancing was incredible.

by Anonymousreply 12December 16, 2021 4:01 PM

[Spoiler] = = = I enjoyed it, but I felt it was too much of him slowly dying.

by Anonymousreply 13December 16, 2021 4:04 PM

The girl who played his daughter bugged me, too, although she was a pretty good dancer for her age.

This was also her last movie. On IMDB, it says she auditioned for Brooke Shields' role in The Blue Lagoon, then left showbiz and became a born again Christian. Ugh.

by Anonymousreply 14December 16, 2021 4:10 PM

I loved the exchanges between the two queens who were producing the play Scheider's character was directing:

"She's uglier than a witch's tit."

"It's 'colder' than a witch's tit."

"What are you talking about? You've never seen a woman's tit in your life."

by Anonymousreply 15December 16, 2021 4:11 PM

"Smoke! Smoke! Smoke!"

by Anonymousreply 16December 16, 2021 4:12 PM

I hatd this movie when it first came out and I am a Broadway Musical fanatic. A few years later, I rented it to see if my opinion had changed and....Nope. Hated it. A Very self-indulgent egotistical film. No Oscars, please.

by Anonymousreply 17December 16, 2021 4:18 PM

I wanted Autumn deep inside me. His hairy chest, his tight ass in that jockstrap. Dayum.

by Anonymousreply 18December 16, 2021 4:24 PM

"I call it a 'near masterpiece' only because of the presence of Leland Palmer. Every scene she's in diminishes the movie."

Strongly disagree. She's great through the whole movie.

by Anonymousreply 19December 16, 2021 5:52 PM

She's perfect casting, r19.

by Anonymousreply 20December 16, 2021 5:54 PM

R20 Why do you think that? Her acting was awful. It was like she was on the Broadway stage, playing to the cheap seats. She was about as nuanced as an explosive fart.

by Anonymousreply 21December 16, 2021 5:59 PM

[quote] She was all wrong for the role. Who was she, anyway? This is the last movie she ever made. I assume she was a Broadway dancer who had had some kind of relationship with Fosse, which is how she got cast.

Fosse met (and probably cast) Leland Palmer in Pippin. She originated the role of Fastrada.

by Anonymousreply 22December 16, 2021 6:06 PM

You sound like you've had a lot of experience with explosive farts, r21.

by Anonymousreply 23December 16, 2021 6:06 PM

“Fuck him! He never casts me!”

“Honey, I did fuck him and he never casts me either.”

by Anonymousreply 24December 16, 2021 6:07 PM

R23 Hi, Leland Palmer! What have you been doing for the past 42 years?

Not acting, that's for sure!

by Anonymousreply 25December 16, 2021 11:30 PM

Do you think Jessica Lange fucked Bob Fosse and that's how she got the part? I do.

by Anonymousreply 26December 17, 2021 12:57 AM

First saw it in theaters in ‘79. It was the first movie I had seen that treated gays as human beings.

Fosse only directed five movies, and yet produced two masterpieces (this and Cabaret), and two very interesting films (Lenny and Star 80). Only Sweet Charity hasn’t stood the test of time. Pretty good track record.

by Anonymousreply 27December 17, 2021 4:07 AM

Another fan of Leland Palmer in this film. She was great and it's a shame she didn't do anything film-wise after All That Jazz.

The opening sequence is really one of the best sequences in film. The editing, the music, the dancing. It's completely exhilarating. And it makes late '70s NYC look so exciting.

by Anonymousreply 28December 17, 2021 4:24 AM

Leland...from Your Own Thing

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by Anonymousreply 29December 17, 2021 4:30 AM

Leland Palmer does a kind of imitation in that movie of Gwen Verdon, the real-life great Broadway dancer with the warbly voice Fosse married in real life.

It both works and it doesn't work. It works if you try to pretend the movie is the unfictionalized life of Bob Fosse and want her character to be as much like real life as possible, since it's a decent impersonation; but I'm not sure it works for the character, because Palmer plays her like such a marshmallow, and Verdon wasn't one in real life (though Fosse was her lifelong soft spot).

by Anonymousreply 30December 17, 2021 4:35 AM

Who’s Leland Palmer? I wonder. If David Lynch named Laura Palmer’s dad Leland Palmer in honor of this person

by Anonymousreply 31December 17, 2021 4:35 AM

[quote]Palmer plays her like such a marshmallow, and Verdon wasn't one in real life

I assume she played her the way Fosse directed her to. Here she is during the Your Own Thing recording session...

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by Anonymousreply 32December 17, 2021 4:42 AM

There was a LONG thread on this movie last year.

It has great moments but it’s frequently self-indulgent and boring.

Jessica has maybe 5 minutes of screen time.

by Anonymousreply 33December 17, 2021 4:47 AM

Leland Palmer was a replacement for the actress Fosse really wanted, Shirley MacClaine. MacClaine was too expensive so they ended up with Palmer.

I thought Palmer was fine. My main critique is that the long, final death musical sequence goes on too long. What saves it is the brutal final cut to them zipping up the body bag. Originally, Fosse had an even BIGGER finale musical scene planned, but they ran out of money. Thank God: That abrupt, cold ending is perfect.

by Anonymousreply 34December 17, 2021 4:50 AM

[quote] I assume she played her the way Fosse directed her to.

Oh [italic]please,[/italic] Miss Mary.

That absolutely does not excuse a weak performance.

by Anonymousreply 35December 17, 2021 4:52 AM

Was "Shirley MacClaine" Shirley Maclaine's non-Union Scottish equivalent?

by Anonymousreply 36December 17, 2021 4:54 AM

Spread a Little Sunshine

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by Anonymousreply 37December 17, 2021 4:54 AM

My Leland Palmer Story - I was assistant directing a children's theatre piece at downy civic light opera in the last century. The stage manager brought in a friend one rehearsal to watch. I introduced myself to her afterwards. I said, "Has anyone ever told you that you look like Leland Palmer?" She said, "I am Leland Palmer." And she was very gracious, not at all condescending. As I recall, it was at the end of the rehearsal and there were only about 5 people in the theatre. I smile every time I think of that encounter because I knew who Leland Palmer was and never thought I'd meet her in Downy, CA.

by Anonymousreply 38December 17, 2021 4:58 AM

I want to like this movie more than I do. The opening sequence, AirRotica, and Everything Old is New Again, were the best parts for me. I also like Leland Palmer in this and thought she was effective in her underdeveloped role. The closing song and dance sequence that was the prelude to his death is a dud for me and kind of blindingly garish and ugly, but I guess that may have been the point.

by Anonymousreply 39December 17, 2021 5:07 AM

OP I don't think it was Lange's performance as our lady of the oxygen tent that kick started her career but Tootsie.

by Anonymousreply 40December 17, 2021 5:15 AM

Leland is Linda Posner at this link.

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by Anonymousreply 41December 17, 2021 5:20 AM

A friend of mine pointed out it's not a good film at all if you didn't know it was based on a real person who wrote and directed the film. The Joe Gideon character comes off as a megalomaniac otherwise: he's supposed to choreograph a light comic ballet for "Air-Rotica" for the good of a light comic Broadway show he didn't even write, and he instead turns it into some insanely deadly serious thing.

by Anonymousreply 42December 17, 2021 5:48 AM

Yeah, remember that the investors LOVED the cheeky, snappy, first 3 minutes of the song. They'd have been super-happy with just that part, but he had to turn it into something dark and kinky.

by Anonymousreply 43December 17, 2021 5:58 AM

WHO was the actor (or maybe just the dancer) who played "Autumn?" Did he ever do anything else after "All That Jazz?"

by Anonymousreply 44December 17, 2021 6:04 AM

John Lithgow's character was based on Fosse's rival Michael Bennett.

by Anonymousreply 45December 17, 2021 6:05 AM

[quote] Do you think Jessica Lange fucked Bob Fosse and that's how she got the part? I do.

Oh for God's sake, everybody knows that Fosse and Lange were fucking each other and of course that's how she got in the cast of "All That Jazz." Their affair was no secret. There's some photo of them out together and it looks like they're about to fuck each other on a dance floor.

by Anonymousreply 46December 17, 2021 6:06 AM

r44, Leland Schwantes.

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by Anonymousreply 47December 17, 2021 6:09 AM

He's a hand model.

by Anonymousreply 48December 17, 2021 6:12 AM

And then Jessica dumped him for Baryshnikov, which stirred up all of Bob's insecurities as a man and a dancer. It was brilliant karma considering how many women he fucked over.

by Anonymousreply 49December 17, 2021 6:13 AM

Here he is

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by Anonymousreply 50December 17, 2021 6:13 AM

I wonder if he's still at the top.

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by Anonymousreply 51December 17, 2021 6:15 AM

I'm a hand model, mama. A finger jockey. We think differently than the face and body boys... we're a different breed.

by Anonymousreply 52December 17, 2021 6:18 AM

Sandahl Bergman's tits were so immobile. I was surprised as I grew up to discover other women's weren't.

by Anonymousreply 53December 17, 2021 6:20 AM

Funny enough, it looks like his son followed in his footsteps, and posted that exact quote on Twitter.

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by Anonymousreply 54December 17, 2021 6:20 AM

Sandahl was cast at the last minute. Fosse had another dancer cast who was attached to the role for months, but he told her right before shooting that he needed her to go topless. He'd originally assured her there would be no nudity in the part. She wouldn't do the nudity, so out she went.

by Anonymousreply 55December 17, 2021 6:23 AM

Schwantes today.

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by Anonymousreply 56December 17, 2021 6:26 AM

Yes r55 Cheryl Clark (one of the Broadway Cassies)

She taught at my college but I didn't know who she was until after I graduated and read her bio online somewhere.

I'd have clumsily tried a dance class just to hear her stories!

by Anonymousreply 57December 17, 2021 7:28 AM

R47 He was so gorgeous.

by Anonymousreply 58December 17, 2021 11:49 AM

Jessica looks so beautiful when she takes her hair down when seducing the Fosse character.

by Anonymousreply 59December 17, 2021 12:14 PM

R41 So Leland Palmer has become a crazy old cat lady?

by Anonymousreply 60December 17, 2021 12:19 PM

I'd like to know the whole story behind Leland Palmer and why she so abruptly left show business. "All That Jazz" could've really put her on an forward trajectory.

by Anonymousreply 61December 17, 2021 1:36 PM

I like the 2010 follow up - All That Jizz.

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by Anonymousreply 62December 17, 2021 1:39 PM

R41 Someone call the paramedics! Leland has fallen and she can't up!

by Anonymousreply 63December 17, 2021 1:40 PM

Sounds to me, r60, that she wanted to lead a more meaningful life...

by Anonymousreply 64December 17, 2021 3:52 PM

Roy Schneider made this movie worth watching and I say that as a fan of Fosse.

by Anonymousreply 65December 17, 2021 4:02 PM

Scheider !!

by Anonymousreply 66December 17, 2021 4:03 PM

Ironically, just started watching the 1957 movie “The Pajama Game.” I had no idea it was choreographed by Fosse. Not far into it, but it doesn’t look too sophisticated.

by Anonymousreply 67December 18, 2021 3:13 AM

It was in its day, r67. Especially the choreography.

by Anonymousreply 68December 18, 2021 3:15 AM

Steam Heat, Fosse all over.

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by Anonymousreply 69December 18, 2021 3:20 AM

The character played by Lithgow was based on Hal Prince. He even wore his glasses on his forehead like Prince and the flop show he's rehearsing is clearly Pacific Overtures.

Palmer is interesting. She went headlong into religion shortly after bailing on the LA production of A Chorus Line. Bennett based the career vs. relationship in ACL on him and Palmer. Unlike McKechnie, he was actually in a relationship with Palmer.

by Anonymousreply 70December 18, 2021 3:23 AM

Vicki Frederick said that the movie was also used for him to rewrite his own history. The scene where the fan tells Lithgow that he's her second favorite director after Joe Gideon was Fosse's revenge for fans always telling him that they loved his show A Chorus line.

by Anonymousreply 71December 18, 2021 3:27 AM

R69) Thank you, I see the genius now. Just wasn’t that far into the movie,

by Anonymousreply 72December 18, 2021 3:27 AM

Also Doris Day had a very 80’s cum lesbian hair style in the movie.

by Anonymousreply 73December 18, 2021 3:31 AM

Fosse made Reinking audition to pretty much play herself numerous times. I loved Deborah Geffner as ‘Victoria’ the not so great dancer Joe fucks then tortures in the rehearsal room.

by Anonymousreply 74December 18, 2021 3:46 AM

Lay back, Victoria...lay back!

by Anonymousreply 75December 18, 2021 3:48 AM

I took a liking to it as a child but I'm not sure why. I remember being stuck by the majesty of the closing number.

by Anonymousreply 76December 18, 2021 3:50 AM

Who else did he audition for Katie?

The Geffner character was based on Jennifer Nairn Smith. Her story was she was a Balanchine dancer and couldn't pick up on the Fosse style and was made into the company victim in Pippin. She was obviously a great ballet dancer but not a great show dancer. The short vignette about the three way was based on the brief three way relationship he had with her and Reinking.

by Anonymousreply 77December 18, 2021 3:51 AM

So tragic Ann Reinking died so suddenly. It doesn't say how on wikipedia. What happened. Was she sick for a while?

It was kind of beautiful in the Oscar tribute (no Against All Odds jokes please) when they used that clip of her jumping into the air in the in memorial segment.

by Anonymousreply 78December 18, 2021 4:47 AM

17 year old me found it amazing when it came out and I saw it at the Broadway theater in Seattle.

by Anonymousreply 79December 18, 2021 4:53 AM

Jessica Lange is great in it. Did she get much attention for it? It was her "comeback" after King Kong and not working for three years. This must have showed that she could act (though I always thought she was fine in King Kong given the role.)

by Anonymousreply 80December 18, 2021 4:57 AM


by Anonymousreply 81December 18, 2021 5:04 AM

the Lange loon would know if she got a lot of attention for the film

by Anonymousreply 82December 18, 2021 5:40 AM

Jessica was so beautiful in that role. Such a great voice to make up for the weird visuals.

by Anonymousreply 83December 18, 2021 5:48 AM

The Fosse/Verdon series said that Fosse promised the daughter role in AtJ to his own daughter Nicole, only to change his mind and recast the part with a much younger actress (Nicole was a teen at the time). I wonder if that's true?

by Anonymousreply 84December 18, 2021 5:49 AM

Nicole was a producer on that show so it probably was true.

by Anonymousreply 85December 18, 2021 5:54 AM

No wonder she had drug and alcohol problems. Fosse was such a nightmare to women, even his own daughter.

by Anonymousreply 86December 18, 2021 5:59 AM

Nicole is in the film version of A Chorus Line as Kristine. I always found that sort of surprising since Michael Bennett was Fosse's rival that year Chicago and ACL premiered. I think they were complimentary of each other's work though.

Such a loss. Both in a year. Broadway never recovered.

by Anonymousreply 87December 18, 2021 6:27 AM

I just realized the line from The Pajama Game, (right before Steam Heat) "where'd ya get the hats?" is used just as thus number begins.

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by Anonymousreply 88December 18, 2021 6:40 AM

Lange's role was small, and I don't remember her getting a lot of attention in reviews or publicity. But she and Nicholson were really hyped two years later for "The Postman Always Rings Twice", and then she had her Golden Year in 1982 with "Frances" and "Tootsie".

by Anonymousreply 89December 18, 2021 6:41 AM
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by Anonymousreply 90December 18, 2021 6:41 AM

[quote]John Lithgow's character was based on Fosse's rival Michael Bennett.

No, it was based on Harold Prince.

"All That Jazz" is Fosse's "8½". He worshipped Fellini.

by Anonymousreply 91December 18, 2021 6:52 AM

Reinking s sudden passing was pretty shocking. I heard she suffered from heart disease and died in her sleep. Such a loss.

by Anonymousreply 92December 18, 2021 6:55 AM

[quote]Only Sweet Charity hasn’t stood the test of time.

Actually "Sweet Charity" gets a lot more respect today. It was a changing time, "Hello Dolly" stole the musical audience and a G rated musical about a Times square hooker with a heart of gold vs an X rated movie about a male hustler wins the Oscar and opens the door to the sexual revolution. There are some really great moments,.

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by Anonymousreply 93December 18, 2021 7:15 AM

Leland Palmer & Leland Schwantes, what are the chances and who thought Schwantes was straight?

by Anonymousreply 94December 18, 2021 7:31 AM

R80 Lange actually got rave reviews for the role, and it saved her career. I remember the critics praising her performance and some stating how surprised they were that she could really act.

by Anonymousreply 95December 18, 2021 11:55 AM

I found Roy quite sexy in ATJ.

by Anonymousreply 96December 18, 2021 12:00 PM

Nicole makes a quick appearance in the movie. She’s the dancer stretching by the coke machine that gets yelled at.

by Anonymousreply 97December 18, 2021 12:37 PM

Was the soundtrack ever put on cd? I have an old vinyl lp that I listen to, but can’t find the music either on cd or streaming.

by Anonymousreply 98December 18, 2021 1:00 PM

I got the music off of iTunes.

by Anonymousreply 99December 18, 2021 1:58 PM

What would have happened had Meryl got King Kong?

by Anonymousreply 100December 18, 2021 3:52 PM

Kong would not have fallen in her lover with her.

by Anonymousreply 101December 18, 2021 4:03 PM

[quote] I got the music off of iTunes.

I search for “all that jazz” and I only get a bunch of recordings and covers of Chicago

by Anonymousreply 102December 18, 2021 4:14 PM

R95 'Angelique, played prettily and vacuously by Jessica Lange'-NY Times

by Anonymousreply 103December 18, 2021 4:20 PM

Vicki Frederick is the best part of A Chorus Line. Though Audrey Landers is a close second.

But what a missed opportunity for a great musical. It was like Attenborough didn't even try to understand it.

And Cassie was so underwhelming. What I did for Love is one of the worst filmed musical numbers in movie history. And Allyson Reed seems like a good actress, but she was miscast.

by Anonymousreply 104December 18, 2021 4:23 PM

[quote] search for “all that jazz” and I only get a bunch of recordings and covers of Chicago

Oh damn. I’ll do a hunt to see if I can figure out where I got it from.

by Anonymousreply 105December 18, 2021 4:27 PM

[quote]And Allyson Reed seems like a good actress

She got matronly and has turned into a fine character actress.

by Anonymousreply 106December 18, 2021 4:32 PM

In one of show biz's biggest "what if's", Fosse said he would have gladly directed A Chorus Line the movie if he'd been asked. But he was considered box office poison after Star 80 and wasn't considered. That makes total sense because ACL totally eclipsed Chicago in 1975 and if he were to do a hit movie out of it, he would take ownership of it, similar to Cabaret.

by Anonymousreply 107December 18, 2021 7:20 PM

[quote] Ironically, just started watching the 1957 movie “The Pajama Game.” I had no idea it was choreographed by Fosse.

"Steam Heat," midway through the movie, is pretty much the only thing in the film that looks like peak Fosse and that displays his originality. The other choreographed numbers are either retro vaudevillian pieces (like the sweet brief soft-shoe bit Eddie Foy, Jr. and Reta Shaw perform in "I'll Never Be Jealous Again") or big studio pieces that look pretty much like everything else of the era in film (like "Once a Year Day").

He was the kind of choreographer insofar as when he really did his thing, the movie or show became entirely HIS thing and no one else's. That's why he's so memorable. But it's almost impossible to imagine him choreographing for a first-rate music & lyrics team--it helped that he worked with composers and lyricists who were superb (Adler & Ross, Cy Coleman, Kander & Ebb) but not really of the highest water (like Rodgers & Hammerstein, Lerner & Loewe, Sondheim), all of whom he would have been a distraction working with. The only one I can see him doing a good job with among the latter group would have been Leonard Bernstein--it would have been really interesting to see what he would have done with "West Side Story."

by Anonymousreply 108December 18, 2021 7:32 PM

[quote]it helped that he worked with composers and lyricists who were superb (Adler & Ross, Cy Coleman, Kander & Ebb) but not really of the highest water (like Rodgers & Hammerstein, Lerner & Loewe, Sondheim), all of whom he would have been a distraction working with

C'mon with the exception of the dance in "The King & I" none of their shows has any note worthy choreography. Fosse would have had nothing to work with. "The Pajama Game" was very early, if not his first Broadway work, he was a hired hand and showed he could conform and stand out.

by Anonymousreply 109December 18, 2021 9:47 PM

Uh...r109...do the words *dream ballet* mean anything to you?

by Anonymousreply 110December 18, 2021 10:00 PM

How mild?

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by Anonymousreply 111December 18, 2021 11:57 PM

Sondheim took a shot at Fosse when he said that he saw the final 20 minutes of Follies and made a career of it. His last shows were all musical numbers stitched together (Dancin didn't even pretend to be a book musical) and Big Deal showed his ego out of control where he tried to build a book show around songs from a certain era.

Fosse was definitely a great talent but also a very limited one as a choreographer. You'll see the same steps and moves in all his numbers, which is why "Fosse' became so numbingly boring because all the numbers began looking the same. Nothing was tailored to the moment or character. He knew how to reach into his bag of tricks to get a reaction from the audiences but he grew lazy and perhaps wasn't capable of doing something really new or relevant to the scene.

by Anonymousreply 112December 19, 2021 12:00 AM

Bob Fosse, Larry Gelbart depict "The American Western" through dance - 1959

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by Anonymousreply 113December 19, 2021 12:27 AM

[quote] Fosse was definitely a great talent but also a very limited one as a choreographer. You'll see the same steps and moves in all his numbers, which is why "Fosse' became so numbingly boring because all the numbers began looking the same. Nothing was tailored to the moment or character. He knew how to reach into his bag of tricks to get a reaction from the audiences but he grew lazy and perhaps wasn't capable of doing something really new or relevant to the scene.

Fosse would agree with this assessment.

by Anonymousreply 114December 19, 2021 12:49 AM

Compare FOSSE to Jerome Robbins' Broadway.

by Anonymousreply 115December 19, 2021 1:11 AM

R46 Fosse and Lange’s affair was over by the time he wrote the part for her in “All That Jazz.” She was Baryshnikov by that point. She’s told the story of how Fosse tried wooing her back by dancing for her. She said it was one of the sweetest things he did. They remained friends until his death.

Incidentally, Fosse took Lange to Key West and took her to visit Tennessee Williams, who was smitten with her and greatly admired her as an actress when she had only done King Kong. He saw that she had “it.”

by Anonymousreply 116December 19, 2021 6:17 AM

*was with Baryshnikov

by Anonymousreply 117December 19, 2021 6:17 AM

Here they are Key West.

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by Anonymousreply 118December 19, 2021 6:19 AM


by Anonymousreply 119December 19, 2021 6:32 AM

[wuote]He saw that she had “it.”

And she does.

by Anonymousreply 120December 19, 2021 10:04 AM

Ann Reinking would have been great as Cassie in the film version I wonder if she was considered for it. I hated that they gave Sheila a daughter and wasn’t Bebe just released from the loony bin? Ugh

by Anonymousreply 121December 21, 2021 8:17 PM

Ann was a finalist along with Leslie Ann Warren.

by Anonymousreply 122December 22, 2021 12:12 AM

I've never seen All That Jazz, is it better than A Chorus Line?

by Anonymousreply 123December 22, 2021 12:41 AM

R123 Much, much better!

by Anonymousreply 124December 22, 2021 1:00 AM

Leslie Ann!!!

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by Anonymousreply 125December 22, 2021 1:03 AM

Broadway Barbara!!!

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by Anonymousreply 126December 22, 2021 7:28 AM

The opening sequence with George Benson’s “On Broadway” playing in the background was damn near perfect cinema. Without a lot of dialogue there is comedy, tragedy and amazing dancing. It’s a perfect kickoff to the storyline.

by Anonymousreply 127December 25, 2021 4:43 AM

Wait- Leland Schwantes is straight? Like, married to a woman straight, or fathered a kid 40 years ago “straight”?

by Anonymousreply 128December 25, 2021 7:43 AM

r112: Fosse stole everything from Jack Cole, most notably Verdon.

Though your criticism of Fosses limited choreographic vocabulary applies to Cole as well.

by Anonymousreply 129December 25, 2021 9:12 AM

That Air Rotica number was the one I remember the most but I haven't seen this movie in ages. Wasn't Ann Reinking in this?

by Anonymousreply 130December 25, 2021 9:19 AM

[quote] Wasn't Ann Reinking in this?

No, it was Ricardo Monalban, Rose.

130 posts into this thread, where Ann Reinking's name has been mentioned over ten times, and now you ask if she's in it?

by Anonymousreply 131December 25, 2021 9:44 AM

Was said in other thread about ATJ some time ago, and am doing so again; opening cattle call scene fucking nails it!

You arrive to a place full of scores of dancers from all sorts. Everything from seasoned pros with years of work under their belts, to little prima donnas from Miss Mary's Dance Academy of Hoboken, NJ.

Then it's show time! Choreographer gives directions for a routine, and you follow and dance best way you know how. Gradually a few score or more dwindles down to dozens.....

You always had guys like one in @2:51 in clip who didn't know what the fuck they were doing (likely one of those Miss. Mary's Dance school alumni or students), and they're soon weeded out.

Roy Scheider had a tight compact little body in film that would have passed for an older dancer. He also had a way about him during the cattle call that you couldn't figure out if he was gay or not, which throws a few of the male dancers off balance.

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by Anonymousreply 132December 25, 2021 10:38 AM

"And it makes late '70s NYC look so exciting"

It was dear, and how!

by Anonymousreply 133December 25, 2021 10:49 AM

I love this movie. Loved it when it first came out....and Autumn made me gay!

by Anonymousreply 134December 25, 2021 11:56 AM

Roy Scheider was perfection. Thank God Richard Dreyfuss dropped out.

by Anonymousreply 135December 25, 2021 4:05 PM

R135 I can't even picture Dreyfuss in that role.

by Anonymousreply 136December 25, 2021 4:18 PM

Dreyfuss would have been too manic.

by Anonymousreply 137December 25, 2021 4:45 PM

Richard Dreyfuss could never pass for a dancer much less even choreographer, his body and movements were all wrong.

by Anonymousreply 138December 25, 2021 5:02 PM

Dreyfuss was a hot property back then and was attached to or mentioned for a lot of projects. I never understood his appeal.

by Anonymousreply 139December 25, 2021 5:08 PM


Erzsebet Foldi was not unlike many young girl dancers then and now attending top schools. In this case Ms. Foldi was studying at School of American Ballet.

For professional ballet most girls and boys start very young, grade school age. By time they reach middle to high school age those with talent and otherwise able to make a go of it are near professional status. Before you had all these colleges offering dance programs that gave four year degrees, most dancers from top schools simply sought and joined various professional companies in the corps de ballet.

OTOH jazz, tap and other dancers would have branched out into getting gigs in musicals or wherever else they could find work. None of this touches those who aspire to be triple threats, which is a whole other ball of wax.

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by Anonymousreply 140December 25, 2021 5:27 PM

Leland Palmer (now Linda Posner) is still around, and has remained active in performing arts circles.

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by Anonymousreply 141December 25, 2021 5:32 PM

Dreyfuss had just won the Academy award for The Goodbye Girl which is what the studio presumably liked about him. But he didn't get along with Fosse maybe because the director thought the actor was forced upon him. It makes you think of the comment Joe Gideon makes to that girl dancer - I can't make you a great dance but I can make you a better one.

by Anonymousreply 142December 25, 2021 6:11 PM

R129, Cole never had the popularity that Fosse had and certainly never the name recognition. Fosse proved in Sweet Charity that he could choreograph for a scene and a character. By the time he got to Chicago, everything was the same. In Big Deal, Beat me Daddy is an exciting number but tells you nothing about the song, the characters or scene. It's interchangeable with Sing, Sing, Sing from Dancin'. Contrast that to Rich Man's Frug or Big Spender and it's obvious that Fosse lost the gift. Was it drugs, age or was he just lazy?

by Anonymousreply 143December 25, 2021 6:20 PM

Richard Dreyfus as a dancer? That's really absurd. He was short and had a stocky, unathletic body. He looked like a turnip. No dancer/choreographer he.

by Anonymousreply 144December 25, 2021 9:37 PM

And R129 Michael stole everything from Bob.

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by Anonymousreply 145December 26, 2021 7:21 AM

Original "Hey Big Spender" from Sweet Charity has yet to be topped.

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by Anonymousreply 146December 27, 2021 11:43 AM

Don't forget "Liza with A "Z" " and Bob Fosse

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by Anonymousreply 147December 27, 2021 11:49 AM

Rich-man’s Frug is mesmerizing.

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by Anonymousreply 148December 27, 2021 1:37 PM

Had no idea Michael Tolan was in "All That Jazz" and that he had such a long and varied career. Only know him mostly from reruns of 1970's crime dramas such as Mannix and Cannon.

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by Anonymousreply 149December 27, 2021 2:43 PM

When Sweet Charity was being adapted from Fellini’s Nights of Cabiria in 1965, book writer Neil Simon couldn’t figure out a way to transfer the church scene from the movie.

He actually had a question mark as a placeholder in his unfinished libretto. Fosse and Cy Coleman got together and invented The Rhythm of Life that opened the 2nd act. Simon was quoted saying they were able to create a brilliant scene that he couldn’t even get a handle on. I think Fosse was very proud of it, and if you look at the scene from the movie, you can see the homage that Bye Bye World from All That Jazz is to the Charity scene. It’s also fitting that this over the top autobiography incorporates elements of his real life work in an adapted fashion.

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by Anonymousreply 150December 27, 2021 2:49 PM

Fosse slightly changed some small elements of Big Spender for the Donna McKechnie tour and it's much better than the one Reinking restaged for Fosse.

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by Anonymousreply 151December 27, 2021 5:31 PM

Beat Me Daddy from Big Deal. A great number for a revue but not for a Broadway musical.

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by Anonymousreply 152December 27, 2021 5:34 PM

Caught Paula Kelly ( black singer/dancer in gold dress, clip R146) on an episode of Cannon earlier this week.

Ms. Kelly was a great actress, singer and dancer. She had a great career but largely did television as other work wasn't always easy for African American actors, dancers, performers to land.

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by Anonymousreply 153January 1, 2022 3:14 AM

Paula Kelly also had regular recurring role on television series "Night Court" as public defender Liz Williams.

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by Anonymousreply 154January 1, 2022 3:15 AM

Did anyone see on YouTube an analysis of All That Jazz by a therapist who has been an assistant music editor on the film? I watched it once, but it seems to have been taken down. He talks about the differences between Gideon and the actual Fosse. Gideon is a dark self-portrait, though Fosse also uses Gideon to explain himself. The therapist says Gideon's narcissism keeps him from being able to connect--you really see it in the "Everything Old is New Again" where he tries to enjoy the charming number being done by his girlfriend and daughter, but his eyes just remain sad. He points out that the Angelique/Death character is always undermining Gideon's self-esteem and it's his literally broken heart that destroys him.

I think Roy Scheider's performance is brilliant. He was nominated, but lost out to Dustin Hoffman in Kramer v. Kramer. Scheider's is the more memorable performance, but despite the nominations, All That Jazz was kind of sidelined that year.

Other random note that I once came across--Angelique's hat looks like the one worn by former Fosse wife Joan McCracken in her last stage appearance. She died early from diabetes complications after Fosse had left her for Verdon and Fosse always felt guilty about it. McCracken pretty much made his career as a choreographer. She was older and knew everyone. If you see Jessica Lange's character as a sub in for the dead McCracken, you have a portrait of a man surrounded by the women who loved him most (McCracken, Verdon, Reinking and his daughter), but who is never whole enough to love himself or them. I think it's a fascinating (and, yes, indulgent) portrait of an artist. Both harsher and more discerning than something like Verdon/Fosse. And with better dancing.

by Anonymousreply 155January 5, 2022 9:22 PM

bump (to get me to read this!)

by Anonymousreply 156January 9, 2022 12:21 AM

Kely's career also hit the skids when she posed for Playboy and showed, gasp, pubic hair. It was thought to be their first pictorial showing bush.

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by Anonymousreply 157January 9, 2022 3:37 AM

Adding a bit more on McCracken--like Verdon, she was extremely good at dancing in character. She had a pretty, grown-up face, but a short, kind of kid-like body, which pretty much meant she was limited to comic and soubrette dancing roles, though she, herself, was quite sophisticated. Anyway, her last stage role was in The Infernal Machine, Cocteau's version of Oedipus Rex, where she played the Sphinx and the Goddess of Vengeance. In the play, the Sphinx talks about being a bringer of death, so I think the similarities between the Jessica Lange character and McCracken aren't accidental.

As for Fosse's originality, I think he and everyone else was influenced by Jack Cole's work, but I don't think Fosse stole from Cole. Their work is pretty distinct, with Fosse keeping the isolations, but dropping the orientalism of Cole's work, and bringing in the bump-and-grind from the burlesque houses where he tapped as a kid. There's always that tension between the sordid of show biz reality and the ideals of the big American musical in Fosse's work. It doesn't always work, but when it's good, it's brilliant--Whatever Lola Wants is Verdon doing a comic striptease, playing a vamp like a cartoon character, failing to seduce Joe Hardy, while completely charming the audience. You don't get that kind of character establishment in Cole.

Meanwhile, Michael Jackson and Beyonce have done step-by-step rip-offs of Fosse. Jackson doing a verson of Fosse's snake dance from The Little Prince and Beyonce using a number Verdon did on TV for Single Ladies. It's not even subtle. Fosse's combination of skill with raunch has dominated theatrical dance for years now.

by Anonymousreply 158January 11, 2022 11:17 PM

I doubt brain dead Beyonce said “Let’s do a Fosse homage!”

Her gay choreographer did.

by Anonymousreply 159January 13, 2022 2:34 AM

It was the video mash-up of the Fosse/Verdon number "Mexican Breakfast" versus "Walk It Out" by UNK that inspired Beyoncé.

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by Anonymousreply 160January 13, 2022 6:31 AM

Yes Beyonce didn't even know who Gwen Verdon was as an individual, referring to her as Fosse's wife.

by Anonymousreply 161January 13, 2022 8:37 AM

Verdon was an amazing dancer. Not at all an accident that Fosse did his best work with her. One of the best ever at expressing a character through dance.

by Anonymousreply 162January 13, 2022 8:59 AM

Gwen Verdon may not have had typical 1950's bombshell looks, but she nailed "Lola" in Damn Yankees, and rocked in that combination leotard and bustier.

Ms. Verdon had Fosse style down pat, other more attractive and or stacked actresses may have fit role of a sexpot, but could they do Fosse's moves?

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by Anonymousreply 163January 13, 2022 10:12 AM

Damn Yankees - Outtakes from TAB HUNTER CONFIDENTIAL

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by Anonymousreply 164January 13, 2022 10:16 AM

R160 Yeah, Beyonce couldn't even spell "Fosse." Her choreography was inspired by Fosse/Verdon. Beyonce just followed his direction.

by Anonymousreply 165January 13, 2022 10:21 AM

While we’re on Fosse rip-offs, here’s Paula Abdul’s Cold Hearted Snake

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by Anonymousreply 166January 13, 2022 10:27 AM

R166 I think that was more an homage to All That Jazz than a ripoff, though.

by Anonymousreply 167January 13, 2022 10:29 AM

If it’s an homage, it’s a poor one. “Airotica” is full of things to say about human sexuality, artistic block, and the games theater people play.

“Cold Hearted Snake” is just sleazy.

by Anonymousreply 168January 13, 2022 10:49 AM

Verdon, like Reinking after her, was a physical dictionary of Fosse's style. Verdon also had a banging bod but unfortunately, her face didn't translate well on camera. It's why she lost parts to Shirley MacLaine, her more photogenic double.

by Anonymousreply 169January 13, 2022 3:03 PM

Yes but MacLaine was not as good a dancer.

by Anonymousreply 170January 15, 2022 10:39 AM

Here's Gwen Verdon on The Ed Sullivan show.

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by Anonymousreply 171January 15, 2022 10:40 AM

Fosse's opening audition scene in All That Jazz is a brilliant but shameless, shameless ripoff of I Hope I Get It. the opening number from ACL.

I wish he'd been allowed to direct the film version of ACL. He said publicly he'd like to do it.

And poor Michael Bennet, who created the show, wanted it badly but was never seriously considered.

Instead we got the inept Richard Attenborough and that awful film.

by Anonymousreply 172January 20, 2022 11:50 AM

Rip off? More like a "fuck you" from Fosse to Bennett. "Look, Michael, I did your entire show in under six minutes."

by Anonymousreply 173January 20, 2022 8:05 PM

131, Go suck a turd

by Anonymousreply 174January 20, 2022 10:33 PM

Though it's overly long I prefer Sweet Charity (1969) to both All That Jazz and A Chorus Line

by Anonymousreply 175January 21, 2022 2:45 AM

Richard Dreyfuss was offered the Joe Gideon role and turned it down. It would’ve been a disaster.

by Anonymousreply 176January 21, 2022 2:56 AM

“All That Jazz” is one of the finest films of the 1970s. Bob Fosse was a genius.

by Anonymousreply 177January 21, 2022 2:58 AM

[quote]Richard Dreyfuss was offered the Joe Gideon role and turned it down. It would’ve been a disaster.

No, he took the part and was so bad Fosse fired him during rehearsals.

by Anonymousreply 178January 21, 2022 7:54 AM
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