Trailer for ‘Blue Like Jazz’: Just Another Coming-of-Age Story?

Kid doesn’t like his family, isn’t really into the strict Christian upbringing that’s tied him down his whole life, jumps ship for a super-liberal college in Portland, where growth and hijinks inevitably ensue. Standard stuff, right? Well, that’s the brief outline for Steve Taylor‘s Blue Like Jazz. But while the plotline for the new film doesn’t really stand out, the film’s background does.

Taylor’s film is based on Donald Miller’s wildly popular book, “Blue Like Jazz: Non-Religious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality.” Miller’s collections of semi-autobiographical essays spent forty-three weeks on the New York Times Bestseller List, and inspired legions of fans to help Taylor’s production make it the the screen (more on that later). Will it be worth it for them? This new trailer alone doesn’t inspire a lot of hope in me – it’s loaded with scenes we’ve seen before, clunky platitudes on life, and a very obvious romantic entanglement. But maybe there’s more to it.

Ignore that shoe-horned in bit about where the film gets its name and check out the film’s new trailer after the break.

Blue Like Jazz stars Marshall Allman, Claire Holt, and Tania Raymonde.

The film had an interesting journey to the screen, as Miller himself reported back in 2010 that the film was “on hold indefinitely,” thanks to lack of funds, news that kicked two fans into action. Two “normal guys” started a Kickstarter campaign for the film (“Save Blue Like Jazz”), initially in hopes that they could raise $125,000 by October 25th of 2010, in order to put the film into production. They did that (and more), as the campaign raised over $345,000 with nearly 5,000 backers.

So while this trailer doesn’t really show me a film that offers anything new to the genre, perhaps it’s not the best representation of the film – after all, it’s clearly got scads of passionate fans, it was recently added to the SXSW schedule, and it’s already been picked up by Roadside Attractions for an April 13 release. [Apple, Wikipedia]

Kate is an entertainment and culture writer and editor living in New York City. She is also a contributing writer for,,, Vulture,,, The Dissolve, Screen Crush, New York Daily News, Mental Floss, and amNY. Her previous work can also be found at MSN Movies, Boxoffice Magazine, and She lives her life like a French movie, Steve.

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