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Gene Krupa Story, The (1959)

Sal Mineo , Susan Kohner , Don Weis  |  NR |  DVD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)

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Gene Krupa Story, The + The Benny Goodman Story + The Glenn Miller Story
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Product Details

  • Actors: Sal Mineo, Susan Kohner, James Darren, Susan Oliver, Yvonne Craig
  • Directors: Don Weis
  • Producers: Philip A. Waxman
  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: SPE
  • DVD Release Date: March 6, 2012
  • Run Time: 101 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0074JOVUU
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #72,499 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

The tale of legendary Gene Krupa, an idealistic youngster who eschewed the conventional life (in his case, the priesthood) for a crack at the big time. And big time he made, to this day inspiring some of the best drummers in the business. Sal Mineo shines as the triumphant and tragic Krupa.

This product is manufactured on demand using DVD-R recordable media.'s standard return policy will apply.

This product is expected to play back in DVD Video "play only" devices, and may not play in other DVD devices, including recorders and PC drives.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One Of Sal Mineo's Finest Performances June 2, 2004
Format:VHS Tape
For jazz and music lovers "The Gene Krupa Story", is unsurpassed entertainment of the first order and contains some of the best ever work by talented actor Sal Mineo. Sal took on his first real solo starring role in this biography of the legendary Gene Krupa who as the percussionist for the Benny Goodman Quartet became the first real jazz heartthrob developing a legion of besotted fans. A major part of his legend was his innovative playing of the drums and in this film Sal Mineo manages to recreate that special magic, with some of the most amazing precussion work ever caught on screen. Having gained stardom for his sensational work in "Rebel Without a Cause", Sal Mineo was at just the right age and level of acting experience to tackle this major acting role and to his credit he manages all the stages in Krupa's life in a totally believable manner with a minimum of sentiment. Mineo's level of understanding of both the sheer genius of Krupa's ability and also his darker personal side makes for a wonderful screen performance that stays in the mind and makes "The Gene Krupa Story", a viewing experience to treasure.

The film traces Krupa's life from his humble beginnings in Chicago as the youngest child of working class parents who live by the rules of traditional life based around family and the church. We get a very early glimpse of the conflict already existing in young Gene when he brings home a set of drums which his angry father smashes as unsuitable for his son to be wasting his time on. After his father's death Gene however bows to the expectations of his family and joins the priesthood but after a year realises that it is not the life for him.
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34 of 36 people found the following review helpful
At long last, "The Gene Krupa story" has been released on DVD by Sony/Columbia home video. Rather than review the actual film, this review concentrates on the DVD format as I am very pleased with this edition! The DVD is nicely packaged with a color picture on the front of the box. The film's glorious black and white has been digitally remastered and the clarity is just amazing. Even more important, the film is presented in full "widescreen" so you can view the film the way it was originally presented in theatres. This allows you to view the entire scope of the screen, instead of having the left and right sides of the screen chopped off into a crappy traditional "square" television format. You can see so much more as we all know how wonderful wide screen is. Although the soundtrack is still "mono," Sony has digitally remastered it, and presents it on this disc in "Dolby Digital." This makes a huge difference as the sound is deeper, lusher, and does great justice to the music. This is simply a beautiful presentation of this film. There are no "special features" such as behind the scenes or out takes, however it does have an interactive menu complete with chapter search. This DVD version of the film blows the old VHS version out of the water! For me, this DVD gave me a fresh new viewpoint of the film. The widescreen format compliments Sal's drumming so much that the VHS version could never come close to doing. I rate this DVD a 10+ on the scale of 1-10! If you love this film as much as I do, BUY THE DVD! Now, if only "Who Killed Teddy Bear" could be released on DVD..Now that would be a treat! I am concluding this review with some technical specs: Screen Formats: Widescreen Anamorphic 1.85:1 Closed Captioned Language and Sound: English: Dolby Digital Mono Original Release Date in theatres: 1959. Released to DVD in May, 2004
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great entertainment December 23, 1999
Format:VHS Tape|Verified Purchase
I find it difficult to understand why so many critics have slammed this movie. Granted it isn't a 100 percent factual account of Krupa's life, but the acting and musical performances are all first rate. Mineo is utterly convincing as a hungry, young jazz drummer obsessed with following his muse and proving himself to the world. I can easily imagine this film inspiring someone to become a drummer (in fact no less a percussion personage than Neil Peart has made that very claim). I doubt the same could be said for the Glenn Miller or Benny Goodman biopics which, though good, are doubtful to inspire a run on trombones or clarinets at the local musical store. If you like jazz, you should definitely check this movie out.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AWESOME! SAL MINEO ROCKS! December 15, 2003
Format:VHS Tape
"The Gene Krupa" is possibly the BEST movie in which SAL MINEO was the picture's main STAR~~A huge Box Office hit in 1959! He studied the drums for 18 months(training with the real Gene Krupa) and although he is playing along onscreen to the REAL Krupa's soundtrack, Mineo's drumming is REAL and leaves you breathless. His acting in this film, as always, is amazing, and the supporting cast is awesome! Featuring the lovely Susan Kohner(who also co-starred in Sal's hit movie version of his tv play, "DINO"), James Darren, and apperances by jazz greats, Anita O'Day, Red Nichols, and Buddy Lester, this is a wonderful biopic sure to thrill jazz lovers, and inspire all generations of future drummers. It's also a wonderful treat for the Sal Mineo fan, especially to see him in something so different than his most famous Oscar nominated role in "Rebel without a cause."(Sal Mineo also was nominated for an Oscar and won the Golden Globe for "EXODUS")
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie! Sal Mineo's acting was superb
Great movie! Sal Mineo's acting was superb, loved the story music was great!
Anyone who loves music of the big band era will enjoy this movie.
Published 19 days ago by Jeanne Flores
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Published 22 days ago by James Martin
5.0 out of 5 stars Sal Mineo did a great job of playing the part of Mr
Being a long time drummer, I have always wanted this DVD in my collection. Sal Mineo did a great job of playing the part of Mr. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Keith P. Capsuto
5.0 out of 5 stars My Pal Sal
Sal Mineo is incredible on the drums. Sal has all the right moves and expressions that make you believe he is actually beating those drums because he is perfectly n sync with the... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Samuel Augustus Jennings
1.0 out of 5 stars Relive the magic of the big band era
Krupa was a fantastic percussionist and his life story was both absorbing and stimulating. If you are interested in big band jazz and the music of the great days of the swing... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Graham Monkman
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome movie!!
My son is a drummer and he absolutely loved watching this movie. Sal Mineo was terrific in his interpretation of the famous drummer, Gene Krupa. Great rendition.
Published 5 months ago by Kathleen F. Grabigel
5.0 out of 5 stars Excelent film!
One of Sal Mineo's best performances and at the height of his swarthy good looks. A powerful story worth seeing and keeping.
Published 7 months ago by ruah albi
4.0 out of 5 stars Good movie... But....
The movie is an interesting view of a great musician, unfortunately it ends up focusing on a small aspect of his life while almost ignoring his musical contributions.
Published 7 months ago by D. Applebay
I have seen this movie on TV & liked it. As I grew up, Gene Krupa was a favorite of
all of my uncles & I Loved to hear him too. Read more
Published 8 months ago by SARA
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story
A couple of times the movie halted for 5 or 10 seconds, but then it continued to the end. Great story.
Published 8 months ago by Merrill Olson
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