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Starring: Tom Hanks, Austin Butler, Olivia DeJonge, Yola Quartey, Luke Bracey, Natasha Bassett, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Dacre Montgomery, Helen Thomson, Richard Roxburgh, David Wenham, Xavier Samuel, Kodi Smit-McPhee
OUR RATING: ★★½
Bio-musical drama directed and co-written by Baz Luhrmann. Elvis (2022) centers on the life and music of Elvis Presley (Austin Butler), seen through the prism of his complicated relationship with his enigmatic manager, Colonel Tom Parker (Tom Hanks). The story spans over 20 years, from Presley’s rise to fame to his unprecedented stardom, his marriage to Priscilla Presley (Olivia DeJonge), against the backdrop of the evolving cultural landscape and loss of innocence in America.
Our Favorite Quotes:'There's a lot of people saying a lot of things. Of course you got to listen to the people that you love. But in the end, you got to listen to yourself.' - Elvis Click To Tweet
Colonel Tom Parker: I am the man who gave the world Elvis Presley. Without me, there would be no Elvis Presley. And yet, there are some who’d make me out to be the villain of this here story.
Colonel Tom Parker: No. No, I didn’t kill him. I made Elvis Presley. Nothing all those muckrakers said in their books was true. Me and Elvis, we was partners. It was Elvis the Showman, and the Colonel the Snowman.
Colonel Tom Parker: I always knew I was destined for greatness. As an orphan, I ran away to the carnival, where I learned the art of the “snow job”, of emptying a rube’s wallet while leaving them with nothing but a smile on their face. But a carnival act that would get you the most money, the most snow, had great costumes, and a unique trick, that gave the audience feelings they weren’t sure they should enjoy. But they do. And I knew if I could find such an act, I could create the greatest show on earth.
'Are you born with destiny? Or does it just come knocking at your door?' - Colonel Tom Parker (Elvis, Trailer) Click To Tweet
Colonel Tom Parker: It don’t matter if you do ten stupid things, as long as you do one smart one.
Gladys: The Lord gave us music to bring people together. We’re like a family, and family is the most important thing of all.
Colonel Tom Parker: But that boy had a big imagination. He really believed he was the hero in one of them comic books.
Colonel Tom Parker: Them comic book heroes all have them super powers. His was music.
'It don't matter if you do ten stupid things, as long as you do one smart one.' - Colonel Tom Parker (Elvis) Click To Tweet
Colonel Tom Parker: [seeing Elvis on stage for the first time] Greasy hair, girly makeup. I cannot overstate how strange he looked.
Colonel Tom Parker: In that moment, in a flash of lightning, I watched that skinny boy in the pink suit transform into a superhero.
Elvis: [during his concert, referring to the women in the audience] What are they hollering at?
Bill Black: It’s the wiggle.
Elvis: The what?
Bill Black: Them girls want to see you wiggle. Move, man!
Hank Snow: [as they watch the audience lose their minds over Elvis] What were you thinking, Jimmie?
Jimmie Rodgers Snow: I don’t know what I’m thinking.
'To achieve truly great things, one must make truly great sacrifices.' - Colonel Tom Parker (Elvis) Click To Tweet
Gladys: [referring to the audience] Please, Lord, don’t let them hurt my baby.
Vernon: Hurt him? Looks like they want to…
Colonel Tom Parker: Now, I don’t know nothing about music, but I could see in that girl’s eyes, that she was having feelings she wasn’t sure she should enjoy. Yes. He was a taste of forbidden fruit. She could have eaten him alive.
Colonel Tom Parker: It was the greatest carnival attraction I’d ever seen. He was my destiny. Right under my nose, in Memphis.
Colonel Tom Parker: He was crazy for that Beale Street music. Beale Street style. He had Beale Street stars in his eyes.
'The way you sing and move, it's God-given. So there can't be nothing wrong with it.' - Gladys (Elvis) Click To Tweet
Colonel Tom Parker: No, I didn’t take my boy away from nothing. He was running from the day he was born. I just opened the door to our destiny.
Elvis: Mama, I’m just trying to take care of you and Daddy. That’s all I have ever cared about.
Elvis: I just got to be making the most of this thing while I can. It’s like Daddy says, this could all be over in a flash.
Elvis: [to Gladys] You’re my girl. My Satnin. You’ll always be my bestest girl. Nothing but nothing, is going to come between us.
Hank Snow: [to Parker, referring to Elvis] Well, you warn him plenty. None of those lewd gyrations, or sudden, jerky movements.
Hank Snow: Is that a pair of young ladies intimates I see upon the stage?
Colonel Tom Parker: Yes, I believe it is, Hank.
Hank Snow: Best not happen when he sings one of my songs.
Colonel Tom Parker: I’m sure it won’t.
Colonel Tom Parker: That night, I happened to see him. Alone. Lost. A snowman is only as good as his attraction. It was all, or nothing.
Colonel Tom Parker: [to Elvis] I saw you. Apart from all the others. Burdened. Like you don’t know how to get out of this. But I do. Allow me to show you.
'If you don't do the business, the business will do you.' - B.B. King (Elvis) Click To Tweet
Colonel Tom Parker: Creatures of the carnival. And I am one myself. It’s where I learned the art of the snow job.
Elvis: Snow job?
Colonel Tom Parker: Yes. It’s like the trick you do with the wiggling, getting all the girls hyped up, empty their wallets, and leave them with nothing but the smiles on their faces.
Elvis: I’m no trickster.
Colonel Tom Parker: Oh, yes, you are. All showmen are snowmen. It’s a wonderful place.
Colonel Tom Parker: Your future, Mr. Presley, blazing before you. Recording contracts, television, even Hollywood.
Elvis: You’re great, Colonel. You are the best person I could ever hope to work with. You know, this is something I ain’t never said to nobody before. But I believe I can be great too.
Colonel Tom Parker: Oh, no doubt. But we could be even greater together.
Colonel Tom Parker: Every man has his price.
Colonel Tom Parker: It’s just business. Show business. To achieve truly great things, one must make truly great sacrifices. You will have to be free of any entanglements. You see, my boy, show business is snow business. And the fans need to believe that you are always available.
'When you're lost, people take advantage.' - Elvis Click To Tweet
Colonel Tom Parker: Mrs. Presley, your son has a unique gift. It’s as though he has the strength of two men inside of him.
Elvis: You know, Colonel, I would do anything to make sure my mama and daddy never have to live in no poverty ever again.
Colonel Tom Parker: Well, what about you, Mr. Presley? Are you ready to fly?
Elvis: Yes, sir. I’m ready. Ready to fly.
Elvis: If I can’t move, I can’t sing.
'When things are too dangerous to say, sing.' - Elvis Click To Tweet
Colonel Tom Parker: Them know-it-alls said I’d backed the wrong horse. But my boy knew teenagers. And that first record changed everything.
Colonel Tom Parker: I took my boy’s wiggling and put it in the movies. I took his name, and face, and put it on all sorts of toys and knick-knacks, and called it “Merchandise”.
Colonel Tom Parker: [referring to the “I Hate Elvis” merchandise] In my way of thinking, “I love Elvis”, that’s an easy sell. Those who hate your son will do so, whether we profit from it or not. After all, what is hate worth if it’s free?
Vernon: Oh, yeah. I get it.
Elvis: Snowman strikes again.
'We are the same, you and I. We are two odd, lonely children, reaching for eternity.' - Colonel Tom Parker (Elvis) Click To Tweet
Colonel Tom Parker: Behold, tomorrow, all of America will be talking about Elvis Presley. My wiggling boy.
TV Host: Your style of gyrating while you sing has been bitterly criticized.
Elvis: I don’t feel I’m doing anything wrong.
Senator Eastland: Colonel, you put an end to your boy’s animal behavior, or we will.
Colonel Tom Parker: Don’t worry, Senator, my boy does what he’s told.
Elvis: “Elvis the Pelvis”. That’s one of the most childish expressions I’ve ever heard coming from an adult.
'The truth about the Rock of Eternity, it is forever just beyond our reach.' - Colonel Tom Parker (Elvis) Click To Tweet
Gladys: Those New York people were using you to poke fun at the whole South. Getting a laugh out of putting a hillbilly in a tailcoat and singing to a dog.
Elvis: Goddamn it, Mama, it was either that or I get canceled.
Gladys: [to Elvis] The way you sing and move, it’s God-given. So there can’t be nothing wrong with it.
Elvis: Got my mama going on about the Hound Dog, and the Colonel’s got me wearing tails, and everybody wants something different.
B.B. King: Hey, listen, man. If you’re sad, and you want to be sad, you’re at the right place. If you’re happy, and you want to be happy, guess what? You’re at the right place. So just do me a favor, let it all hang out. Let it all hang out, EP!
'Without a song, the day would never end. Without a song, a man ain't got a friend. Without a song, the road would never bend, without a song. So I keep singing a song.' - Elvis Click To Tweet
B.B. King: [to Elvis] You’ve got to be in control, man. You should have your own label, like me. If you don’t do the business, the business will do you.