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-Jake’s Corner

by Dr. D ~

*Now available on DVD; Director: Jeff Santo; Cast: Johnny Dunn (Richard Tyson), Diane Ladd (Fran), Danny Trejo (Clint), B.J. Thomas (Doc), Tony Longo (Gus), David Della Rocco (Wheels), Colton Rodgers (Spence), Karla Basile (Ricki). 

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Review by Dana Chaffin

     March 2, 2010 is the DVD release date for Jake’s Corner.  This is a touching story of tragedy, loss, and family.  It is a drama mixed with comedy that can be enjoyed by the entire family.  Singer B.J. Thomas (Raindrops Keep Fallin on my Head, Hooked on a feelin) acts and performs in the film.  The movie soundtrack of various entertainers is also available.  Writer/Director Jeff Santo’s story behind the film and his family history that lead up to the making of the film is outstanding.

Jake’s Corner is about an ex-football star, Johnny Dunn (Richard Tyson), who escapes to Jake’s Corner in the desert of Arizona after an accident takes the lives of his parents.  Dunn is trying to answer the question…why did this happen?  Jake’s Corner is an actual place in Arizona with a general store, bait shop, bar, and RV park.  For the people who live there, it is home.  Dunn gets a disturbing call that his only sister, her husband, and son were in a terrible accident and only the son survived.  He had not yet recovered from the loss of his parents, now he was expected to help his nephew Spence (Colton Rodgers).  Trying to protect him from the pain, Johnny decides not to tell Spence that his parents died.  Johnny calls a meeting of all those at Jake’s Corner to require them not to tell Spence the truth.  The curious young boy will bring out the best in everyone at Jake’s Corner. Spence starts to remember about the accident and runs away to his home only to find the truth.  The gang at Jake’s Corner search frantically for their lost friend.  The touching moment when Johnny and Spence share their pain is outstanding.

Jake’s Corner was written and directed by Jeff Santo.  The story of how Santo found the site Jake’s Corner is extremely moving.  He had previously produced a documentary, This Old Cub, about his father, Chicago Cub legend, Ron Santo.  He was the first and only major league baseball position player to play with Type One Juvenile Diabetes (insulin dependent).  He did not reveal his diabetes during most of his career in fear of being forced to retire.  Santo eventually had both legs amputated due to complications from the disease.  A portion of all revenues earned by the film was donated to Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).  The film was so inspiring that it sparked one viewer to take action.  Wild Bill Holden watched the film repeatedly before he decided to help out the cause.  To raise money for JDRF he would walk from Prescott, Arizona to Wrigley Field in Chicago.  This over 2,000 mile journey would be Holden’s way to show respect to the legendary Cub. Jeff Santo heard of Wild Bill Holden’s adventure and caught up with him at a stop called Jake’s Corner.  He would later use the actual site to shoot the movie Jake’s Corner. Together Holden and the film have raised over $250,000 for JDRF.

     Jake’s Corner will make you laugh, cry, and then laugh again.  The characters from Jake’s Corner may not be blood related, but this odd bunch is certainly family.  To find out more about the movie, to purchase the DVD, or buy the soundtrack go to www.jakescornerthemovie.com            *Top

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