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Expresso Bongo (1959)

Not Rated | | Drama, Music | 11 December 1959 (UK)
Johnny Jackson, a sleazy talent agent, discovers teenager Bert Rudge singing in a coffee house. Despite Bert's protestation that he really is only interested in playing bongos, Johnny ... See full summary »

Director:

Val Guest

Writers:

Wolf Mankowitz (based on "Expresso Bongo" by), Julian More (based on "Expresso Bongo" by) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Laurence Harvey ... Johnny Jackson
Sylvia Syms ... Maisie King
Yolande Donlan ... Dixie Collins
Cliff Richard ... Bert Rudge / Bongo Herbert
Meier Tzelniker Meier Tzelniker ... Mayer
Ambrosine Phillpotts ... Lady Rosemary
Eric Pohlmann ... Leon (as Eric Pohlman)
Gilbert Harding Gilbert Harding ... Himself
Hermione Baddeley ... Penelope
Reginald Beckwith Reginald Beckwith ... Reverend Tobias Craven
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Storyline

Johnny Jackson, a sleazy talent agent, discovers teenager Bert Rudge singing in a coffee house. Despite Bert's protestation that he really is only interested in playing bongos, Johnny starts him on the road to stardom. The deal they cut, however, is highly exploitative of the young singer, and their relationship soon begins to go bad. Written by George S. Davis <mgeorges@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Laurence Harvey in an outstanding and different motion picture that takes you into a world of burlesque houses .. jazz dens ... and flesh-and-blood people! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 December 1959 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

A Singing Idol See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The credit titles for writer, producer and director are written on sandwich boards carried by writer Wolf Mankowitz as he walks around Soho. See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits are shown on a neon sign outside a theatre, a jukebox, a pinball machine, a barrel organ, a restaurant menu, a pin-board, ending with a sandwich-board man. See more »

Alternate Versions

Reissued in 1962 at 106 minutes. This shorter version omitted a number of songs, including "Nausea." About 2 minutes of alternate scenes were used to fill in some of the cut musical scenes. See more »

Connections

Version of Bongo Boy (1965) See more »

Soundtracks

Nausea
(uncredited)
Music by David Heneker (as David Henneker) and Monty Norman
Lyrics by Julian More and Wolf Mankowitz
From original stage show
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Laurence Harvey's performance
9 December 2005 | by rayshaw44See all my reviews

Harvey's performance is akin to Cary Grant in His girl Friday which I term "Cary Grant unleashed" Like Grant, Harvey takes his character and far from overacting rather sets the screen on fire. As for the movie itself,it lags when Harvey is not on the screen and it needs another actress in the Dixie roll who can somehow match Harvey. Dixie drags down the last third of the film. For the legions who deem Harvey's career as a series of zombie-like performances, Bongo turns that opinion on it's ear. Cliff Richard does a good job in his first screen roll. Beware of the current DVD release. It does not have several musical numbers and this greatly mars the movie.


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