In Focus - 'Blues Brothers 2000' Makes a Sweet-Sounding Sequel - Kronos One
 what's new
 re: ryan olson
 re: kronos one
 e-mail ryan

Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Brothers: Dan Aykroyd (left), J. Evan Bonifont and John Goodman get down with the sweet sounds of the gospel from the Reverend Cleophus James (James Brown) in "Blues Brothers 2000."

'Blues Brothers 2000' Makes a Sweet-Sounding Sequel
Dan Aykroyd and John Goodman bring the band together once more for a toe-tappin' good time

UCSD Guardian Hiatus
February 6, 1998

The mission from God that sent Jake and Elwood Blues on a wild trip through Illinois in the original "Blues Brothers" continues in its sequel, "Blues Brothers 2000."

The original cult-classic spun off the wildly successful House of Blues chain of nightclubs and numerous recordings. The movie left an indelible mark on the musical landscape.

"Blues Brothers 2000" harks back to the original movie. The movie is dedicated to John Belushi, Cab Calloway and John Candy --stars that passed away in the interim. There are also several inside jokes that will thrill any fan of the original.

The strongest feature of "Blues Brothers 2000" is the music; very few minutes typically pass before they launch into another song.

The musical talent in the movie is outstanding. The stand-out group of brilliant musicians include old favorites such as B.B. King, James Brown, Aretha Franklin and Bo Diddley. The film also features a new generation of musicians that includes Erykah Badu, Johnny Lang and Blues Traveler. Of course, to forget the Blues Brothers Band would be a sin.

Music Director Paul Shaffer must be given credit for casting the more than 40 musicians. The actual music is excellent and is the best part of the film. It's a shame that all the musicians couldn't be showcased.

The songs that are performed in this film are nothing short of outstanding. Of course, there is nothing that can top the Blues' dancing style.

For those that care about the razor-thin plot, "Blues Brothers 2000" focuses on the life of Elwood Blues (Dan Aykroyd) after he is released from prison --18 years after the Blues Brothers' last gig. Elwood discovers that Jake (Belushi) has passed away.

Now alone in the world, Elwood must try to find a new family. Conveniently, his new "family" appears in the next five minutes in the form of the orphan Buster (J. Evan Bonifant) and the straight-as-an-arrow police officer Cabel Chamberlin (Joe Morton). Cabel is the illegitimate son of Curtis (Calloway), Elwood's old mentor.

Elwood's ultimate goal is to get the band together after an 18-year separation. The group starts off in a "stripster club" where they pick up bartender Mighty Mack McTeer (John Goodman) as the group's new lead singer. The film ends with a battle of the bands in the bayous of Louisiana.

Along the way, the band runs into the Russian mob, a redneck militia and a lot of old friends that add spice to the movie.

Sadly, the weakest link in this movie is the plot. Whereas the plot in the original seemed like four fried chickens and a Coke, the plot in "Blues Brothers 2000" seems like two pieces of white bread --adequate, but not really satisfying.

It appears that Aykroyd and director/writer John Landis threw in a skeleton of a plot to link musical numbers together. Characters do things in the movie without much explanation or reason.

Of course, that is not to say that the movie doesn't have funny lines -- it does, but not with the consistently funny zip that the original did.

The music and the energy this movie exhibits is undeniable. The plot seems to be the only weak point in the movie, and the only thing that prohibits the viewer from having a truly enjoyable time.

The Forum is a production of The Kronos One Project

Copyright 1997, 98. All rights reserved.

Last updated February 10, 1998

Made With Macintosh