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  • Writer's pictureIan Delia

ELVIS: The Era of Rock

Elvis poster

Having been born in the early 2000s, I didn’t get the chance to experience the transformation of rock music throughout the 60’s. However, I’ve been a fan of Elvis since first hearing “Burning Love” in the Disney film “Lilo and Stitch.” Along with being born a little too late, I wasn’t around either for BB. King or Janet Jackson and for that matter other legends of the era’s music community. But don’t get me wrong, as they are always playing in the morning for my drive to work.

In this phenomenal movie about Elvis’s upbringing, we are treated to the unique twist of blues and gospel that gets transformed into rock and roll. “The King”, even from his early stages, ushers in a generation by losing his body and soul to his love for music. Considering all I thought I knew about Elvis, I’m glad to get a brief inside look at his childhood and his strong relationship with the black community during a time of segregation, where a small kid was able to fit, even in his neighborhood where he didn’t exactly look like he belonged. While his community kept an open heart for young Elvis, he was given a chance to discover what many consider to be, the times of the greatest music.

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Austin Butler and Tom Hanks in ELVIS from Warner Bros. Pictures. All photos courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Actor Tom Hanks who plays the role of Colonel Tom Parker, gives a manager’s side of the story. It’s a deeper look into Elvis (played by Austin Butler) a superstar being run dry of his fame just to support Colonel Parker’s gambling addiction. For some people, enough is never enough. For Parker, it was gambling, and Elvis, the love from his fans.

Austin Butler gives a phenomenal performance bringing the true suspense to the behind-the-scenes drama in Elvis’s life. The costumes and makeup work in his favor showing his aging and weight gain right up to his death. Butler even this will enhance his already good career and lead him to even bigger roles.

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Austin Butler as ELVIS from Warner Bros. Pictures. All photos courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

In the same vein, Kelvin Harrison Jr. plays the great BB King who befriends Elvis in his early years. He provided an outlet for Elvis’s trying times. Harrison was a perfect choice for the Blues artist.

Director Baz Luhrmann has done a great job with casting and bringing back historic musician B.B. King (Kelvin Harrison Jr) and has created an amazing soundtrack to be released on June 24th. The soundtrack also includes music by Arthur ‘Big Boy’ Crudup (Gary Clark Jr), Yola (Sister Rosetta Tharpe), and Little Richard (Alton Mason) to name a few.

The film Elvis has been Rated PG-13 by the MPAA for substance abuse, strong language, suggestive material, and smoking. For the target audience, I give the film 8.5 out of 10.



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