Steve Allen makes his dramatic film debut in The Benny Goodman Story. Obviously made to cash in on the success of The Glenn Miller Story (1953), this slow-moving biopic isn't quite in the same league. Outside of Goodman's conflicts with his parents over his career choice, and his early frustration over not being able to play his kind of music, the film tends to be more a series of musical highlights than a biography. Something could have been made of Goodman's tireless efforts to racially integrate the Big Band scene of the 1930s and 1940s, but Universal chose to sidestep this. As for Steve Allen, his dour, low-key performance does little to enliven the proceedings; Allen is at his best when miming the prerecorded clarinet licks of the real Benny Goodman. Despite its faults, The Benny Goodman Story remains a treat for music fans, with guest appearances by Gene Krupa, Lionel Hampton, Teddy Wilson, Harry James, Martha Tilton, Ziggy Elman, and Sammy Davis Sr. (as Fletcher Henderson).