Rock, Rock, Rock!

Rock Rock Rock

Drama, Musical | 86 Mins | Released: 1956
Director: Will Price
Starring: Allan Freed, Tuesday Weld, Connie Francis, Fred Manfred, Teddy Randazzo, Jacqueline Kerr, Chuck Berry
Our Rating: 6
Black & White

Rock, Rock, Rock! is a 1956 black-and-white motion picture featuring performances from a number of early rock ‘n’ roll stars, such as Chuck Berry, LaVern Baker, Teddy Randazzo, the Moonglows, the Flamingos, and the Teenagers with Frankie Lymon as lead singer. Later West Side Story cast member David Winters is also featured. Famed disc jockey Alan Freed made an appearance as himself. The voice of the main character (Dori Graham) was sung by Connie Francis.

The movie has a fairly simple plot: teenage girl Dori Graham (played by then 13-year-old Tuesday Weld) can’t convince her dad to buy her a strapless gown and has to get the money together herself in time for the prom.

The soundtrack album, also titled Rock, Rock, Rock, is nowadays widely regarded as Chuck Berry’s first album. Many of the artists featured in the film do not appear on the album, and only four songs on the album (“Over and Over Again,” “I Knew From the Stars,” “You Can’t Catch Me,” and “Would I Be Crying”) actually appear in the film. In addition, “I Never Had a Sweetheart” and “Little Blue Wren” also appeared in the film and was sung by Connie Francis in her MGM Records single at the same time in 1956.

Both Jack Collins and Valerie Harper (who makes a brief appearance as an extra in the crowd at the prom) made their film debut in Rock, Rock, Rock.

In 1984, the film entered the public domain (in the USA) due to the claimant’s failure to renew its copyright registration in the 28th year after publication.

Movie Notes:

Only four songs from the 12-track “Rock Rock Rock” soundtrack album were used in the film. Noticeably absent, though on the album, are Chuck Berry’s early hits “Maybelline” and “Roll Over Beethoven”, as well as The Moonglows’ pop and R’n’B standards “Sincerely” and “See Saw”.

Tuesday Weld’s singing was dubbed by Connie Francis

Film debut of Tuesday Weld.

Valerie Harper‘s film debut. She is sitting at the center table during the performance of “Ever Since I Can Remember” by Cirino and the Bowties.

A movie theatre marquee in the opening shot of this picture reads Private’s Progress (1956), which like this film, was distributed by DCA.

Film debut of Jack Collins.