“ Genre: Comedy / Theatrical Release: 2008 / Suitable for 12 years and over / Director: Peter Cattaneo / Actors: Jane Lynch, Jeff Garlin, Josh Gad, Will Arnett, Rainn Wilson ... / DVD released 2009-03-09 at 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment / Features of the DVD: PAL „
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Fantastic film! I had mixed emotions about watching the film as i hadn't heard much about it but in the end i was persuaded. As a music and film lover this film puts the two together with a hint of comedy. The acting is great; really good cast including Christina Applegate who work well together including star Emma Stone who has made a good impression in Hollywood. The narrative is compelling as it follows the journey of a band who go from practising in their rooms to being signed and touring whilst seeing them transform. Last but not least the music is brilliant and very catchy in a non-high school musical way (no offence to high school musical lovers).
I do not want to spoil the rest because it really is a must see and if i were a film critic i would give it 4 stars. The reason i give it 4 and not 5 stars is simply because it might not be everyone's humour but the film offers more than that. So if you are feeling the need to watch something different and a film on the down-low then The Rocker is a good 'en.
My fiancee bought me this film when I was really down in the dumps one day, hoping that it would cheer me up.
The plot: Fish (Rainn Wilson), is a drummer in a rock band, They have just been signed by a big label and are set to become famous and rich.
The terms of the bands new contract however is to dump the drummer.
20 years later and Fish is a complete failure, while his old bandmates are famous the world over.
However he is given a second chance in the form of his teenage nephew.
His nephew is in a high school band and they have just lost their drummer, cue Fish.
The spurred rockstar is given a second chance to make something of himself and his new bandmates.
On the front of the dvd cover there is a quote from Heart that says the film is 'laugh out loud funny'.
So I watched and waited............
............20 minutes in and still nothing, which parts were I supposed to be laughing at?
45 minutes in and i'm still waiting, then when I reached the end of the film I had to double check the back of the dvd to make sure that it was actually supposed to be a comedy.
The thing that annoyed me the most was the fact that Rainn Wilson was just imitating Jack Black through this whole film, and doing an awful job at that.
He was trying to be a complete carbon copy of Jack Black, who has become famous for his silly dance moves and the shockingly hilarious way he talks.
In case your not familiar with Jack Black he has been in films such as: School of rock, Tenacious d- pick of destiny, Nacho Libre, Shallow Hal and lots more.
Another thing that made me want to turn the dvd off, was the part where Rainn Wilson plays the drums naked, I tell you it wasn't in the slightest bit funny as you could tell it was meant to be.
Also there was apart when he had sweated that much he hugged everyone and drenched them in sweat, another apparantly hilarious moment, I just felt extremly sick and left the room at that point to do other things.
The dvd is 3 pounds 99 pence on amazon but my advice is don't waste your money and don't waste your time while you could be doing something more important.
I would rather jump of a cliff than have to watch this rubbish ever again.
Rainn Wilson shot to fame playing the eccentric mortician Arthur in HBO's superb drama Six Feet Under. Furthermore, a starring role in NBC's American version of The Office secured him as a mainstay of American comedy, ensuring him numerous cameos and roles in comedy films. The Rocker is his first lead role in a film, and sadly, he deserves better. Not only did the film not bode well with critics, it is one of the least profitable films of 2008, despite considerable promotion.
Borrowing much of its premise from Richard Linklater and Jack Black's fantastic School of Rock, the film involves Robert "Fish" Fishman (Rainn Wilson) as a washed up musician of a formerly famous 80s band that never quite made it. When he is most down on his luck, he meets up with his nephew, Matt, and the two begin to form a band. It follows a pretty clear formula that I guess you can already recognise. There's little here that's funny or new, and despite a distinguished cast and crew, including Full Monty director (and Best Director nominee) Peter Cattaneo. It's a woefully undercooked "comedy" that sticks rigidly to a depressing formula. It tries to be clean, which is almost admirable given the recent spate of Frat Pack comedies, but it fails to replace toilet humour with anything worthwhile.
Rainn Wilson's best efforts cannot prevent The Rocker from amounting to nothing more than a trite and tired formulaic comedy with laughs that are intermittent at best. Perhaps well-intended and inoffensive, but too inert to make an impression.
The film opens on a rock band - Vesuvius - closing a set. They finish and are offered a contract on condition that they get rid of their drummer Robert 'Fish' Fishman, replacing him with the record label owner's son. Although they don't want to do this they are quickly persuaded to do so. The drummer is understandably upset.
Cut forward 20 years. Vesuvius are a world phenomenon, and have just released yet another massively successful album which they are now touring on the back of. 'Fish' is working in a call centre. He quickly loses this job when a colleague plays the new album and he reacts...quite badly. We find out that this is not the 1st time he has lost a job through issues arising from the band. On this occasion he also loses his girlfriend and has to move in with his sister and family for a while. From here he eventually agrees to help out his nephew's band by filling in for their drummer at a prom gig. From here we follow the rise of the band and Fish's fated confrontation with Vesuvius.
It's a comedy, and a very simple one at that. The jokes are as often as not slapstick and when not don't require too much thought to grasp. The acting is acceptable, the various cast members deliver their lines nicely enough but nobody is being asked to portrayal great depths of emotional turmoil. The songs are original and pretty good, although that of course is a matter of taste. They aren't spectacular and they don't get stuck in your head for days afterwards which is a bonus. Overall this is an ok film with some nice lines, but there are better rock films out there. If you like it you might want to take a look at School of Rock, (which has a similar plot), Still Crazy, or This is Spinal Tap.
Robert 'Fish' Fishman was once the drummer for up and coming metal band 'Vesuvius', n the eve of them hitting the big time their manager orders them to lose Fish. Fish is promptly fired from the band and spends the next twenty years in dead end jobs while Vesuvius hit the jackpot and become one of the biggest bands in the world.
After being fired from his latest job, Fish ends up in his sister's house and lives in the attic. After hearing his nephew's band playing in the garage, he's asked to stand in for their recently expelled drummer at the upcoming prom. After a disastrous performance, they persist with Fish and after a video of him drumming naked during a practice on youtube they sign a record contract. The band travels the country playing to bigger and bigger audiences eventually supporting Vesuvius. Will Fish make amends with the band, or will it end in disaster?
Its actually a strange mix of Will Ferrell type comedy with that of High School Musical, this doesn't actually harm the film at all giving it added warmth and empathy. The young actors that make up the rest of the band do very well and whilst not setting the screen alight with their acting ability, do have their own stories to tell - and not just a reaction from Wilson's antics.
In some respects I suppose it's a bit similar in tone to 'School of Rock'. Its got the same disaffected older guy with a rock god persona with a massive ego who thinks they could have made it. Here though, Wilson is little more restrained than the over-the-top Jack Black.
Rainn Wilson has impressed me for a long time, ever since playing the geeky alien in 'Galaxy Quest', but more recently as Dwight Shrute in the American version of the Office. In fact, the only reason I put this film on my rental list was to see if he could carry a film on his own. He does, by the way - very well indeed. Wilson has all the comic ability of a Steve Carell, a Will Ferrell or a Ben Stiller. That said, you could easily see any of those aforementioned actors playing this part - but Wilson does manage to make it his own.
The teenage group aren't too bad either. The gothy lead singer and songwriter Teddy Geiger is moody and broody. Fish's nephew Josh Gad is a Seth Rogen wannabe through and through and while not getting many decent one-liners isn't too annoying. Best of the bunch is Emma Stone who plays the bands bass guitarist.
The songs that were written especially for the film are good, without being too schmaltzy. The scenes in particular that surround the 80's incarnation of 'Vesuvius' are very accurate and neatly blend Motley Crue and Poison together to make this fictional band that Wilson was an ex-member of. The payoff at the end is not what you might expect as well, but equally satisfying.
I was quite surprised that The Rocker faired poorly at the box office. It was a decent film and deserved to be seen. I enjoyed The Rocker, mainly down to Wilson's portrayal of the old metal-head, but theres lots more to enjoy here. Recommended.
The Rocker, Peter Cattaneo's Rainn Wilson-starring comedy, bears some narrative resemblance to the director's early, vastly superior, The Full Monty, with male stripping substituted for playing in a rock band and all of the have-we-missed-our-chance angst channelled into one character - Wilson's Robert "Fish" Fishman - rather than several. As it is, it's a slight, inoffensive but only sporadically funny effort that, as rock comedies go, is a far cry from a Walk Hard, never mind a This Is Spinal Tap, having much more in common with the likes of Airheads or Still Crazy.
When we meet Fishman he is a drummer in upcoming hair metal band Vesuvius. The band are moments away from signing a record deal, the one condition being that Fishman is kicked out in favour of a relative of the label boss.
Twenty years later, the band are selling out stadiums and are about to be inducted in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, whilst Fishman has just been fired from his job, has just split up with his partner, and is forced to take up accommodation in his sister's attic.
Whilst there, he learns of his nephew's band, A.D.D, themselves two days from a performance at the high school prom and in sudden need of a drummer.
You know where it's going.
Fishman joins, the band are a hit - first locally, then nationwide following the surprise success of an embarrassing youtube video - the labels come a-calling, the band go on the road, lessons are learned, old scores settled, blah blah blah.
It does feel very much a throwback to an early-to-mid 90s style of Hollywood comedy seemingly usurped of late by the much looser, and much funnier, Apatow-brand. This is nuts and bolts fall-and-rise stuff - but there a few laughs to be had, for sure.
Wilson is amusing enough, playing pretty much his Dwight (or Not Gareth) character from the U.S version of The Office. The bulk of the laughs, though, come from his nephew and from his brother-in-law, played by Curb Your Enthusiasm hero Jeff Garlin.
It's all just feels a wee bit lazy. A bit bland. And very very forgettable.
But it IS likeable enough for the bulk of its duration, and if you're into the McFly / Busted brand of teen-guitar-pop, you'll probably like it all the more.
And there is at least one moment - a seemingly half-improvised line about U2 - that had me chuckling for a good five or six minutes.