Tear Jerker / The Jazz Singer

"There are a lot of jazz singers, but you have a tear in your voice."

  • Disregarding that unfortunate blackface, the heart with which Jolson delivers his numbers, even when the love for his mother evolves into narm, resonates even today.
    • Every rendition of "Kol Nidre," most especially Jolson finally singing it at the end with perhaps his most heartfelt voice throughout the picture. He sings it when Sara surmises that doing so might bring to pass a miracle, which will rouse him from his deathly illness. When the father hears it, he perks up, acknowledges that his son has earned forgiveness...then dies on the spot, leaving Sara in tears. Then his spirit materializes behind his son, thus signaling the atonement as the hymn comes to a wailing conclusion.