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Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics What's this?

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  • Starring: , , ,
  • Summary: In Keep On Keepin’ On, a 23-year-old, blind piano prodigy, Justin Kauflin, who suffers terrible stage fright, finds his way to jazz legend and teacher Clark Terry, 89. Over the course of filming, Terry begins to lose his sight as an unlikely bond begins to take hold. When Justin is invitedIn Keep On Keepin’ On, a 23-year-old, blind piano prodigy, Justin Kauflin, who suffers terrible stage fright, finds his way to jazz legend and teacher Clark Terry, 89. Over the course of filming, Terry begins to lose his sight as an unlikely bond begins to take hold. When Justin is invited to compete in an elite international competition, Clark’s health takes a turn for the worse. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. Reviewed by: David Lewis
    Nov 1, 2014
    100
    One need not be a jazz aficionado to enjoy this film. All that’s required is a smile.
  2. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Oct 2, 2014
    90
    Like other stories of musical tutelage, Keep On Keepin’ On is ultimately an examination of the pursuit of greatness. It is a grueling and demanding endeavor, for sure, but also, for Mr. Terry and anyone lucky enough to enter his orbit, a source of unending joy.
  3. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Dec 4, 2014
    88
    As the title implies, though, Keep on Keepin’ On has more on its mind. The film’s as much about the young Kauflin’s struggles — as a 21st-century Asian-American naïf trying to succeed in a 20th-century art form created by African-Americans, as a blind man navigating the often callous New York jazz scene. It’s also about the ongoing health of jazz itself as the music recedes further from the mainstream into the protective world of festivals and small clubs.
  4. Reviewed by: Timothy E. Raw
    Sep 30, 2014
    75
    Slowly, the powerful message of heart and soul winning out over an impaired body and over-thinking mind develops into the core drama of this otherwise modest doc.
  5. Reviewed by: Stephanie Merry
    Oct 9, 2014
    75
    One of the delights of the documentary is hearing Terry tell stories. Watching the movie feels as if you’ve sat down in someone’s living room to hear tales of other legendary jazz musicians, such as Count Basie or Miles Davis.
  6. Reviewed by: Kerry Lengel
    Nov 13, 2014
    70
    It's a gentle and unassuming film, lingering over sometimes poignantly awkward conversations as Terry encourages his protege to persevere in his search for an original voice to go along with his skilled hands.
  7. Reviewed by: Bill Stamets
    Oct 16, 2014
    50
    Hicks may devote too much time on hospital errands and bedside moments as Terry’s health declines. But he succeeds at honoring the career of one man who is helping another’s.

See all 18 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of
  2. Mixed: 0 out of
  3. Negative: 0 out of

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