Doc Pomus’s musical legacy keeps rolling on.
A.K.A. DOC POMUS (William Hechter, Peter Miller). 98 minutes. Opens Friday (November 29). For venues and times, see listings. Rating: NNNN
Born in 1925, Jerome Solon Felder was a beefy Jewish kid from Brooklyn forced to walk on crutches as the result of a childhood bout with polio. Doc Pomus was the name Felder used when he performed in blues clubs in the 40s, so his mother wouldn't be embarrassed.
He never really broke out as a performer, but Felder found great success as a songwriter, writing early pop hits like A Teenager In Love, This Magic Moment, Save The Last Dance For Me and Viva Las Vegas with his frequent collaborator Mort Shuman.
A.K.A. Doc Pomus is a standard rockumentary, with directors William Hechter and Peter Miller using talking heads, still photos and archival footage (including several TV interviews with Felder, who died in 1991) to track his presence through decades of rock and roll history.
It doesn't break the mould for musician docs, but that's okay. The music is terrific and the story compelling. And any doc that gets the stellar There Must Be A Better World Somewhere back into circulation is worthy of the highest praise.