It Must Schwing! The Blue Note Story

Wednesday, May 8
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1hr 53mins // directed by:Eric Friedler // featuring:Herbie Hancock, Quincy Jones, Sonny Rollins // English and German w/ English subtitles

Part of The National Center for Jewish Film's Annual Film Festival.

In 1939 New York, two penniless German-Jewish refugees, Alfred Lion and Francis Wolff, founded the legendary Jazz label Blue Note. At a time when African American musicians faced discrimination and segregation, Lion and Wolff saw kindred sprits and treated Blue Note’s black artists as equals, recording and promoting Jazz greats like Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, John Coltrane, Sonny Rollins, and Thelonious Monk. Beautifully made by Eric Friedler and Oscar-winner Wim Wenders, this marvelous, schwinging documentary features an incomparable soundtrack of brilliant Jazz, style-defining archival photos and graphics (Wolff was also a photographer), moving interviews, and handsome animation.

“It Must Schwing! is the most elaborate, visually brilliant and unexpected documentary on the topic… A cinematic, historical, socio-political and acoustic masterpiece.” — Radio Brandenburg Berlin

“A unique and intimate look at the most exciting era in Jazz… Impressive!” — Rolling Stone

“An exciting film of high cinematic quality. An emotionally thrilling and also brilliant monument to jazz music, to a legendary record label and to a lifetime friendship.“ — DFM Radio Germany

“A Gesamtkunstwerk (“total work of art”). Totally breathes new life into their work.“ — Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung