Young Man with a Horn Movie Review Summary

Actors: Kirk Douglas, Lauren Bacall, Doris Day

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Young Man with a Horn

He's not named in the movie, but it's known that the Rick Martin character is based on real-life musician, Bix Beiderbecke, although Martin's story and Beiderbecke's end differently. Martin is a wonderful jazz trumpeter, playing in the 1920s, having started to play when young, following his mother's death. Martin doesn't like the restrictions of playing in orchestras he performs with and gets fired when he improvises one night. He values the friendship of a singer named Jo Jordan and a jazz pianist named Smoke Willoughby, who support his kind of music.
Click here to see the rest of this review

He forms his own group and achieves success. Jordan falls in love with Martin, but it's her friend, Amy North whom he prefers, and they eventually marry. The marriage isn't good and they argue a lot. Martin turns away from music, descending into alcoholism. When his wife destroys his record collection, the relationship ends. Jo Jordan and Willie Willoughby save him from his self-destruction, and Martin realises his love for Jordan. He returns to his music, too.

Best part of story, including ending: I love the jazz score and the main character's struggle with his inner demons

Best scene in story: When Rick Martin falls down drunk in the street and a cab runs over his trumpet, because it's so symbolic of his tragedy.

Opinion about the main character: I like his emotional connection to the music. I dislike the weakness in his character.

The review of this Movie prepared by Anne Iredale a Level 2 American Robin scholar

Script Analysis of Young Man with a Horn

Click on a plot link to find similar books!

Plot & Themes

Time/era of movie:    -   1900-1920's Job/Profession/Poverty Story?    -   Yes Job:    -   musician

Main Character

Identity:    -   Male Age:    -   20's-30's


United States    -   Yes City?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Is this movie based on a    -   book

Movies with storylines, themes & endings like Young Man with a Horn

Young Man with a Horn Message Board (click here)
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
2 Ways to Search!

Our Chief Librarian