The Rocker

Buy this DVD at Amazon.com

Rating: PG-13

Starring:
Rainn Wilson as Robert ‘Fish’ Fishman
Christina Applegate as Kim
Teddy Geiger as Curtis
Josh Gad as Matt Gadman
Emma Stone as Amelia
Jeff Garlin as Stan
Jane Lynch as Lisa
Jason Sudeikis as David Marshall
Will Arnett as Lex
Howard Hesseman as Gator
Fred Armisen as Kerr
Bradley Cooper as Trash
Lonny Ross as Sticks
Jon Glaser as Billy
Jane Krakowski as Carol

Directed by Peter Cattaneo

Special Features:
Commentary with Director Peter Cattaneo and Actor Rainn Wilson
Commentary with Actors Josh Gad, Teddy Geiger, Emma Stone, and Jason Sudeikis

Other Info:
Widescreen (1.85:1)
Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
French Language Track
French and Spanish Subtitles
Running Time: 102 Minutes

The Movie:
The following is the official description of the film:

“Rainn Wilson (TV’s ‘The Office’) drums up huge laughs in this hilarious comedy about living in a rock ‘n’ roll dream… and waking up in a midlife crisis. Twenty years after being kicked out of his nearly famous ’80s hair band, retired rocker Robert Fishman (Wilson) gets a hilarious second chance at stardom and must pull out all the stops to reclaim the rock-god throne he always thought he deserved! ”

“The Rocker” is rated PG-13 for drug and sexual references, nudity and language.

Mini-Review:
Being a big fan of “The Office,” I was keen on seeing Rainn Wilson in “The Rocker.” The movie was promoted very heavily at the San Diego Comic-Con and caught my interest. My kids were also interested in seeing it because it was promoted very heavily on Nickelodeon. (I suppose Fox was trying to follow the popularity of “School of Rock” with young audiences.) I was finally able to catch it on DVD.

I found the movie to be OK. Not great and not bad, but still amusing. The problem was that it was too tame for adults and too inappropriate for the kids they were promoting it to. It never struck the right tone. For example, in the movie we’re treated to numerous shots of Wilson’s bare butt, scenes with Wilson getting drunk, and scenes of Wilson making sex jokes. It wasn’t exactly appropriate for the kiddies who Nickelodeon promoted it to. At the same time, the movie never fully ventures into the parody of ’80s hair bands and the rock music industry like it could. There are small bits of it here and there, but “The Rocker” doesn’t take it far until they venture back into the territory that younger audiences would be familiar with.

All that being said, the movie is fun. Rainn Wilson carries the movie well as Robert ‘Fish’ Fishman. His enthusiasm for rock, his disdain for his former band mates, and joy at rediscovering rock glory are a lot of fun to watch. His younger co-stars do well, too, though they are often eclipsed by Rainn. Emma Stone stands out well as Amelia and Josh Gadis good as his nephew, Matt Gadman. Among the guest stars, Will Arnett is hilarious as Lex, the lead singer of Vesuvius. When he reappears later in the movie sporting a British accent, he’s even more funny. Rounding out the great supporting cast are Jane Lynch, Jeff Garlin, Christina Applegate, and Jason Sudeikis.

The music in “The Rocker” is pretty good. It’s not bad, but it’s not memorable either. Children of the ’80s will hear a lot of memorable rock songs in the background that will start toes tapping.

Overall, “The Rocker” is a fun movie. Fans of Dwight Schrute will enjoy it quite a bit as will anybody that enjoyed “School of Rock.” I would advise parents to pay attention to the PG-13 rating. Don’t make the mistake of exposing your young children to Rainn Wilson’s butt crack like I did.

I don’t know if there’s another edition of The Rocker out there, but the version I was sent by Fox only had two measly special features, and they were both commentaries. They’re fun enough to listen to, but I would have liked to have seen more.

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