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The Last Waltz
- Band

Overview - In what just might be the finest rock & roll concert film ever, THE LAST WALTZ celebrates the final performance by the Band (Robbie Robertson, Rick Danko, Richard Manuel, Levon Helm, and Garth Hudson). The show took place on Thanksgiving Day in 1976, at San Francisco's Winterland Arena--where the group had played their very first show more than 16 years before.  Read more...

 
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Overview

In what just might be the finest rock & roll concert film ever, THE LAST WALTZ celebrates the final performance by the Band (Robbie Robertson, Rick Danko, Richard Manuel, Levon Helm, and Garth Hudson). The show took place on Thanksgiving Day in 1976, at San Francisco's Winterland Arena--where the group had played their very first show more than 16 years before. In order to make their farewell even more unforgettable, they recruited numerous guests to join them onstage, including Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, Eric Clapton, Muddy Waters, Ronnie Hawkins, Paul Butterfield, Emmylou Harris, Neil Diamond, the Staple Singers, Dr. John, Ringo Starr, Ron Wood, and Lawrence Ferlinghetti. Martin Scorsese, a former roommate of Robbie Robertson's, employs some of the world's greatest cinematographers--including Michael Chapman, Vilmos Zsigmond, and Laszlo Kovacs--to film the set in a way that captures the show's sweat and energy with a powerful intimacy. Interspersed into the songs are a series of interviews with the Band's members, who recall their early days playing for empty bars and their emergence as major players in the rock & roll game. THE LAST WALTZ is a thrilling concert film, mandatory viewing even for those unfamiliar with the Band or rock music in general.

Cast List

Muddy Waters - American R&B Musician
McKinley Morganfield - American R&B Musician
Lawrence Ferlinghetti - AMERICAN POET
Bob Dylan - Folksinger/Songwriter
Robert Zimmerman - Folksinger/Songwriter
Neil Diamond - Pop Singer/Songwriter/Actor
Martin Scorsese - American director/screenwriter/producer, GOODFELLAS (1990)
Van Morrison - Irish Singer/Songwriter
Emmylou Harris - Country Music Singer
Boris Leven - Production Designer
Dr. John - Jazz Piano legend
Mac Rebennack - Jazz Piano legend
Ringo Starr - British Musician/Actor, HELP!(1965), BORN TO BOOGIE (1972)
Richard Starkey - British Musician/Actor, HELP!(1965), BORN TO BOOGIE (1972)
Richard Starkey (aka Ringo) - British Musician/Actor, HELP!(1965), BORN TO BOOGIE (1972)
Eric Clapton - British Songwriter/Musician, "Layla"
Eric Clapp - British Songwriter/Musician, "Layla"
The Band
The Staple Singers - Soul Singers
Joni Mitchell - Canadian Singer/Songwriter
Roberta Joan Anderson - Canadian Singer/Songwriter
Jonathan Taplin
Lazlo Kovacs - Hungarian-born director of photography
Laszlo Kovacs - Hungarian-born director of photography
Vilmos Zsigmond - Hungarian Director of Photography
William Zsigmond - Hungarian Director of Photography
Michael Watkins
Robbie Robertson - Composer/Musician
Jaime Robbie Robertson - Composer/Musician
Ronnie Hawkins - Rock Music Performer
Neil Young - Musician/Filmmaker/Artist
Bernard Shakey - Musician/Filmmaker/Artist
Ron Wood - British Guitarist/Stones
Paul Butterfield - R&B Singer/Songwriter
Michael Chapman - American Director Of Photography/Director

 
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Movie Reviews

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Synopsis:
Martin Scorsese's stunning THE LAST WALTZ captures the Band's historic farewell performance in San Francisco on Thanksgiving Day, 1976, and features many revealing interviews with members of the legendary group. Among the many titles included are "The Weight," "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down," "Helpless," and "I Shall be Released." Featuring some of rock & roll's most revered figures--including Bob Dylan, Neil Young, and Joni Mitchell--THE LAST WALTZ is unquestionably one of the greatest concert films ever.

Notes:
Theatrical Release: April 26, 1978. Filmed on location in San Francisco, California. The Band perform the following tracks: "Don't Do It," "Theme from The Last Waltz," "Up on Cripple Creek," "Stagefright," "It Makes No Difference," "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down," "Shape I'm In," "Ophelia," "Life Is a Carnival," "The Well," "Evangeline," "Old Time Religion," "Genetic Method: Chest Fever," "Out of the Blue," and "The Weight." The film was originally rated R by the MPAA but rerated PG on appeal. The film marked the first appearance in a major motion picture for composer and musician Robbie Robertson, who went on to act in such films as CARNY. Guest appearances: "Evangeline" (with Emmylou Harris) "The Weight" (with the Staples) "Further on Up the Road" (with Eric Clapton) "Baby Let Me Follow You Down" (with Bob Dylan) "I Don't Believe You (She Acts Like We Never Have Met)" (with Bob Dylan) "Forever Young" (with Bob Dylan) "I Shall Be Released" (with Ensemble) "Mystery Train" (with Paul Butterfield) "Dry Your Eyes" (Neil Diamond) "Down South in New Orleans" (with Dr. John) "Who Do You Love?" (with Ronnie Hawkins) "Coyote" (with Joni Mitchell) "Helpless" (with Joni Mitchell & Neil Young) "Caravan" (with Van Morrison) "Such a Night" (with Dr. John) "Tura Lura Lura (That's an Irish Lullaby)" (with Van Morrison) "Mannish Boy" (with Muddy Waters)

Reviews:
"...An outstanding rock documentary....The film is a series of highlights....Tight and exciting...It fits together beautifully..." - 04/12/1978 Variety


"...A dazzling array of talent on display here..." - 04/26/1978 New York Times, p.C15


"...A revealing document..." - 04/29/2002 Chicago Sun-Times, p.36


"...The first rock-concert film shot in 35mm....It's a RAGING BULL knockout job supervised by Scorsese and Band guitarist Robbie Robertson..." - 05/10/2002 USA Today, p.16D


"...Some of the best musical performances ever caught on film..." - 05/10/2002 Entertainment Weekly, p.56


"...The film boasts kinetic, crisply lighted camerawork and foot-of-the-stage sound..." - 11/27/2003 Rolling Stone, p.78


5 stars out of 5 -- "[T]he gig is alive and momentous....The Band live up to their myth in Scorese's scorching testament." - 01/01/2012 Total Film


4 stars out of 5 -- "It's worth seeing in a cinema, partly because Scorsese took uncommon care over little things like camera placement and content, but also because they really crank the volume." - 01/01/2012 Sight and Sound

 
Customer Reviews