Great Movie Scenes: Elvis Presley Sings “Jailhouse Rock”

“Let’s rock everybody, let’s rock!
Everybody in the whole cell block,
Was dancin’ to the Jailhouse Rock!”

With those words, Elvis Presley electrified audiences in 1957 with his performance of the title tune from Jailhouse Rock. The third feature from the rock and roll legend, it starred Elvis as a construction worker who is imprisoned for killing a woman’s attacker during a fight. While serving a two-year sentence for manslaughter, he is taught how to play the guitar from his ex-country music performer inmate. After he is released, Elvis pursues a career in music and begins juggling work and love — performing a variety of timeless hits that include “Treat Me Nice” and “I Wanna Be Free” in the process.

The performance of “Jailhouse Rock” captures the raw energy of the rock revolution and as such is not only a jaw-dropping performance, but an iconic movie scene that is among the best ever captured on celluloid. Although this sequence is now 60 years old, its impact has not dulled one bit. It captures a legend in his prime, and that’s something that Elvis fans and lovers of cinema in general can agree upon.