The Blues Brothers is the first movie based on characters from a Saturday Night Live sketch. It’s also the best and the only one I felt captured the spirit of SNL. While maintaining its own original story at the same time. Not an easy thing to do, but that’s what makes The Blues Brothers so good. Even while making it R rated. Which is certainly an interesting decision for the previously TV appropriate show. Then again it was the 80s. Just about everything was R rated.
My first introduction to the Blues Brothers was actually in an episode of Drake & Josh titled “Blues Brothers” (an episode that stopped airing for some reason). Where they did a tribute to “Soul Man” while dressed as the characters. I didn’t know what they were referencing, I just knew I enjoyed it. So I watched the movie for the first time with my mom. After she told us about the characters and how much she loved the movie. As well as how The Blues Brothers is technically a musical since its filled with numerous musical numbers…
“Joliet” Jake (right) and his brother Elwood (left)
After being let out of prison, “Joliet” Jake Blues reunites with his brother Elwood Blues. Their played by SNL alumni John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd respectively. Jake and Elwood always dress in black suits, black hats, sunglasses, and drive an old police car that they dub the “Bluesmobile.” Jake is the one who swears the most and Elwood is the one with the thick Chicago accent. They go to visit their childhood nun (the Penguin) and they learn that their orphanage will get closed down unless they come up with $5,000.
Reluctant at first, they receive a sign from God to help out by putting the band back together. Which proves easier said than done. As their reckless behavior attracts the attention of the police department, state troopers, the SWAT team, firefighters, the National Guard, the Military, Neo-Nazis, country band The Good Ol’ Boys, and an insane woman with a missile launcher. The Blues Brothers is hilarious with scenes like swearing in front of a nun, driving through a mall, rounding up the band, and “they broke my watch.”
Like SNL, The Blues Brothers is filled with amazing cameos from legendary singers and celebrities. Singers like James Brown, Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, and Cab Calloway. Celebrities like Frank Oz, John Candy, Carrie Fisher, and Twiggy. They also set a record for how many cars they destroyed. Since the climax is nothing but wrecking cars. Plus I live in Illinois, so I appreciated all the references and love for Chicago. The Blues Brothers is easily the greatest Illinois movie ever made (a close second would be Ferris Bueller’s Day Off). The Blues Brothers is over-the-top, hilarious, and soulful at the same time.
Jake and Elwood play with Ray
Followed by: Blues Brothers 2000