Part musical, part morality play, and one of the best car-chase movies of all time, “The Blues Brothers” turns 40 years old this year.
It debuted June 20, 1980, and today “The Blues Brothers” is remembered for cementing John Belushi’s status as a comedic star and for elevating the Black art form of blues—all through the antics of Belushi and Dan Aykroyd, who gave Nazis their due while they reveled in vehicular destruction.
The plot centers around Jake and Elwood Blues, a pair of recidivist ne’er-do-wells raised in a Chicago orphanage run by a stern nun (“the Penguin”) seemingly imbued with supernatural powers. Upon Jake’s release from prison, the duo visits the orphanage and discover it will soon be shut down because it owes $5,000 in back taxes. The brothers decide to get their old blues band back together to raise the tax money and run afoul of the law