Review: Rock of Ages


Director:Adam Shankman

Cast:Julianne Hough, Diego Boneta, Russell Brand, Paul Giamatti, Alec Baldwin, Tom Cruise

Running Time:123.00


In 1987 the hair was big, the walkman a revelation, and taking a Greyhound cross country in pursuit of your dreams an everyday occurrence.  A lot has changed since then; as for the music, its withstood the test of time.

Featuring an obliterating cast of A-listers, Adam Shankman's Rock of Ages tells the story of a small town girl and a big city guy, both in high pursuit of their dreams in the heart of it all - Hollywood.  But love never comes easy.  Faced with countless obstacles and a dose of a misunderstanding, the duo must throw their reservations to the wind as they battle through life while rocking to some of the biggest tracks of the 1980s.

Containing more lyrics and notes than actual dialogue, Rock of Ages is a musical through and through.  Adapted from the Tony nominated Broadway play by the same name, Ages takes a unique route to success by using all pre-release tracks.  That's right, there isn't a single original song as each is 'borrowed' from a legendary 'hair band.'  This provides for immediate recognition, and the occasional sing-along moment that is sure to ignite fans.

The film does lean towards the comedy side of things (a rarity with any musical) and  often takes the opportunity to laugh at itself.  I will admit that a few of the side stories appeared a bit forced, especially that between Baldwin's Dupree and Brand's Lonny.  And while the film really does rely on your admiration for the music, the story is able to hold itself together and use its actors to give the feature a bit of depth.

Tom Cruise, my biggest question mark going in, was outstanding as the unbelievable Stacee Jaxx.  His on-screen persona bore an extreme sense of irony as he brought a male diva to the screen unlike anything I've ever seen before.  Not only was he unmanageable, but Cruise's Jaxx was a downright douche. Though he is promptly displayed in every trailer, he is a supporting player, with Julianne Hough and Diego Boneta leading the way as our love interests.


About Stephen Davis

Stephen Davis
I owe this hobby/career to the one and only Stephanie Peterman who, while interning at Fox, told me that I had too many opinions and irrelevant information to keep it all bottled up inside. I survived my first rated R film, Alive, at the ripe age of 8, it took me months to grasp the fact that Julia Roberts actually died at the end of Steel Magnolias, and I might be the only person alive who actually enjoyed Sorority Row…for its comedic value of course. While my friends can drink you under the table, I can outwatch you when it comes iconic, yet horrid 80s films like Adventures in Babysitting and Troop Beverly Hills. I have no shame when it comes to what I like, and if you have a problem with that, then we’ll settle it on the racquetball court. I see too many movies to actually win any film trivia contest, so don’t waste your first pick on me. My friends rent movies from my bookcase shelves, and one day I do plan to start charging. I long to live in LA, where my movie obsession will actually help me fit in, but for now I am content with my home in Austin. I prefer indies to blockbusters, Longhorns to Sooners and Halloween to Friday the 13th. I miss the classics, as well as John Ritter, and I hope to one day sit down and interview the amazing Kate Winslet.

Leave a Reply