The Rocker: 4.0 Stars
Rainn Wilson (TV’s “The Office An American Workplace”) takes centre stage in this wildly irreverent comedy about living your dreams – and embarrassing your family – at any cost. Twenty years after being kicked out of his nearly famous ‘80s rock group, Robert “Fish” Fishman (Wilson) gets a hilarious second chance at stardom when he joins his nephew’s high school garage band. Without missing a beat, Fish vows to reclaim the rock-god throne he always thought he deserved… while taking his much younger band-mates along for the rides of their lives!
2008 – Certificate: 12 – USA
Rating Details: Moderate sex references and infrequent muffled strong language
Today is a special day. From the mid-late 80s until the mid-late 90s, I didn’t really go to see many gigs; in fact off the top of my head I can only remember one. Then I went to see China Drum at ULU (University of London Union) and everything changed. It was the band that singlehandedly reintroduced me to live music. Then after three albums, China Drum split up and the world became a slightly more crappy place. It’s been at the top of my “wish they would reform” list for years. Now, twelve years on, China Drum is playing a gig in February in London. To say I’m a bit excited is like suggesting the sun is a bit warm. This movie is about something a little similar.
I’m a bit of a sucker for films about music and bands and I really like Rainn Wilson, so it’s probably no surprise that I enjoyed this one. There’s nothing especially groundbreaking about it, but it’s fun and at times really very funny; it has some great lines in it. It just about manages to stay on the right side of becoming a parody à la “Spinal Tap” and Fish remains a likable character. It seems to get compared to “School of Rock” a lot, but I think this is the better of the two films as it feels (okay slightly) more grounded. It has a number of clever little references in it to other films and ‘pop culture’ and there’s even a small cameo from Peter Best, The Beatles’ original drummer. The DVD has loads of extras too. Highly recommended.
Recommended for people who used to be into music and then ‘grew out of it’, but secretly wishes they hadn’t.
No cats, chainsaws or decapitations.
Top badass moment? The ending is terribly clichéd, but who doesn’t want to get one over on someone who got one over on them years ago? There’s nothing like holding a lifelong grudge; even I have one or two. It’s not the most grown-up way to get rid of the latter, but beating a long-standing nemesis is most certainly badass. Rock on!