Rock of Ages

Date Tue, October 9 2012

Rock of Ages

Rock of Ages

I don’t usually review movies that are available on DVD (or soon to be), but I’ll make an exception for this rock musical. I wasn’t familiar with the source material, but I’d love to see the play now that I’ve seen the movie. If you are familiar, then you’ll be expecting the cheesiness and the allover fun. In fact, I think that’s what made me like this movie so much..

You see, Rock of Ages doesn’t have an amazing plot. It’s a thin girl-moves-to-Hollywood-to-make-something-of-herself story. There’s a boy. There’s some sleazy LA types, and there’s Catherine Zeta-Jones fighting tooth-and-nail against the drugs, sex and rock ‘n’ roll.

The line-up for the musical features a whole bunch of people you never knew could sing and, to be honest, not all of them work it. Julianne Hough as the lead is probably the worst, but Tom Cruise surprises as he belts out a few ’80s tunes. This movie is gratuitous when it comes to glam rock ballads and other songs from the era. If it’s been popular on a jukebox or karaoke night, then it’s probably in Rock of Ages. This is bad news if you don’t love those songs. Then again, if you’e not a fan of “Don’t Stop Believin'”, then I’m probably not a fan of you.

This is just one of those movies that’s so awful it’s good, and there’s a lot of awful. Alec Baldwin, for example, plays a sleazy club owner. Mrs. Michael Douglas is interesting for the self-rightous music-hater and Russell Brand, well, he doesn’t seem like he’s acting as much as he seems like he’s playing himself (a douchebag) who happens to be gay (with Alec Baldwin). Malin Akerman makes an appearance and isn’t half bad at singing; although, her voice sounds particularly like Cameron Diaz during some spoken parts. Later in the movie, Mary J Blige belts out a few numbers.

None of the music in this movie is original or underplayed. However, some unique medleys make their way into the score. Many of the people who didn’t like this movie expected it to be more ‘rock’ or hardcore. This isn’t what you’d expect from the play, as far as I can tell. In fact, the most highly-rated review on IMDB calls this a ‘camp Broadway musical’. But you know what? That’s exactly what it was. And it’s all sorts of good fun if you’re into campy.

I laughed and sang along the entire time I was watching Rock of Ages. I get the feeling that all the cast and crew did as well. The movie obviously doesn’t take itself seriously, and neither should you.

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