Synopsis by Mark Deming
Two musicians whose dance band is going nowhere happen across a roadhouse in the sticks, where a pack of fun-loving youngsters are dancing to a new and different beat -- the kids call it rock 'n' roll! The band, Bill Haley and his Comets, leaves the two musicians mighty impressed, and they agree to manage Haley and his crew. They soon meet disc jockey Alan Freed, who immediately secures Haley and the boys a nightclub stand in the Big Apple, where the Comets become the hottest ticket in town. As stories go, Rock Around the Clock was not stunningly original, but at least director Fred F. Sears and producer Sam Katzman had the good sense to stay out of the way and let Bill Haley and his Comets do what they do best -- mix cowboy swing with rhythm and blues, make with the boogie, and have a fine old time doing it. Haley and Co. perform most of their best-known tunes here, including "See You Later, Alligator", "Razzle Dazzle", "Rudy's Rock" and (of course) the title tune, and if they look and sound a bit staid compared to what Elvis Presley, Little Richard and Gene Vincent would be serving only a few years later, their music is good, clean fun and swings a lot harder than most folks give it credit for. Rock Around the Clock also features performances from The Platters ("The Great Pretender" and "Only You") and Freddy Bell and His Bellboys.
big-city, DJ, musician, roadhouse, rock-music