Last Update: Wednesday, July 16, 2014

'Rock of Ages' Revels in Big-haired Kitsch PDF Print E-mail
Written by Christy Lemire   
Thursday, 21 June 2012 02:35

DAVID JAMES/WARNER BROS. PICTURES/AP PHOTO

This film image released by Warner Bros. Pictures shows Tom Cruise as Stacee Jaxx in New Line Cinema's rock musical "Rock of Ages," a Warner Bros. Pictures release.

Just when you thought you'd never hear Def Leppard's "Pour Some Sugar on Me" again outside of a strip club comes "Rock of Ages," a shiny, splashy homage to the decadence of 1980s rock 'n' roll.

Specifically, we're talking about 1987 on the Sunset Strip, the birthplace of bands like Guns N' Roses and Poison, and all the big-haired, eye-linered debauchery that defined that scene. Your enjoyment of this musical, based on the Tonynominated Broadway show, will depend greatly on your enjoyment of this music _ because director Adam Shankman ("Hairspray") crams in a lot of it.

Did you make out in a car with your high school honey past curfew to Skid Row's "I Remember You"? If your answer is yes, you'll probably have a good time, even though the movie lasts an awfully long time. There's way too much Foreigner on the soundtrack for my personal liking, and no one ever needs to hear Starship's "We Built This City" played in public (or in private for that matter), even ironically.

Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'," the film's climactic final number, has the misfortune of having grown tiresome in recent years between its inclusion on "Glee" and "The Sopranos" finale. And if we're really being nitpicky, some of the songs featured here, like the Extreme ballad "More Than Words," didn't even exist yet.

Still, if this era was a formative time in your life and you're feeling a yearning for kitschy nostalgia, "Rock of Ages" provides a sufficiently fun little escape.

Aqua Net! Wine coolers! Men with ponytails! We were so lame.

Sure, the characters are all broad types, from fresh-faced newcomers with dreams of stardom to grizzled, cynical veterans who've seen it all. And sure, their antics are glossed-up and watered-down compared to reality to ensure a PG-13 accessibility.

But the movie has enough energy to keep you suitably entertained, as well as a knowing, cheeky streak that prevents it from turning too reverent and self-serious.

The impossibly adorable Julianne Hough stars as Sherrie, a wholesome blonde fresh off the bus from Oklahoma who hopes to make it as a singer in Los Angeles. Instead, she ends up working as a waitress at the venerable (and fictional) Bourbon Room, where she quickly falls for aspiring rocker Drew (Diego Boneta).

But the club has lost some of its cache, to the distress of its owner (Alec Baldwin in long hair and a leather vest) and his right-hand man (Russell Brand, being Russell Brand), so they're hoping a performance from rock god Stacee Jaxx (Tom Cruise, easily the best part of the film) will keep them alive. Stacee's sleazy manager (a well-cast Paul Giamatti, who's also game enough to sing) merely wants to continue milking his notoriously unreliable client.

With a bandana tied around his long, wild tresses, aviator sunglasses and fur coat over his bare, tatted chest, Cruise is clearly aping Guns N' Roses lead singer Axl Rose. (And speaking of apes, everywhere the character goes, he's accompanied by his pet baboon named Hey Man).

But the swagger is reminiscent of his supporting role in "Magnolia," still his best work yet. Cruise gives a performance that's intensely weird and weirdly intense; it's sexy and funny and a great fit for his own status as a rock star among actors.

Unfortunately, this film version (with a script from Chris D'Arienzo, who created the stage show, Allan Loeb and Justin Theroux) also feels the need to cram in a subplot about the selfrighteous, uptight wife (Catherine Zeta-Jones) of L.A.'s mayor (Bryan Cranston), who's on a crusade to clean up the Strip. Even though the "Chicago" star's intentionally rigid performance of Pat Benatar's "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" is good for a laugh, the whole story thread seems like a feeble attempt at injecting tension.

Far more effective is the presence of Mary J. Blige as the strip club owner with a heart of gold who takes Sherrie under her wing when life in Los Angeles gets too tough. The second she struts into a room and opens her mouth, she just blows everyone else away _ a powerful reminder of how a superstar can truly rock.

"Rock of Ages," a New Line Cinema release, is rated PG-13 for sexual content, suggestive dancing, some heavy drinking and language. Running time: 123 minutes. Two and a half stars out of four.

Share
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 June 2012 02:40
 






Team members care for thousands of the region's sickest children with heart conditions, including fetuses, newborns, infants, children, adolescents, and adult, long-term patients with pediatric cardiovascular conditions. At Children's families experience coordinated, next-generation care, delivered by a compassionate, multidisciplinary team of leaders in the pediatric cardiology field. One of the largest pediatric cardiovascular programs in the region. Studies have shown that high volumes are associated with high quality and better outcomes, because experience is a major factor in quality of care. Wort was traditionally prescribed in parts of Europe for depression (in addition to use as a general-purpose tea), and Chinese medicine developed elaborate lists of herbs and preparations. With the scientific revolution in Europe and the United States, the use of traditional herbal remedies fell out of favor with the mainstream medical establishment, although a few people continued to use and maintain knowledge of traditional European herblore. In the early 20th century, scientists began reassessing this rejection of traditional herbs in medicine. Vorzüge eines intakten und lebendigen Gemeinschaftslebens bewahren. Dafür sorgen nicht zuletzt gut 120 lokale Vereine. Als wichtiger Faktor im Kulturleben haben sich die zahlreichen Museen und einige Kunstgalerien erwiesen. Descriptive and quantitative transcriptome analyses are important for interpreting the functional elements of the genome and revealing the molecular constituents of cells and tissues. It is known that sperm function can be affected by ASG proteins, including the processes of capacitation and the acrosome reaction, as well as canadian pharmacy accutane sperm motility, DNA integrity and interaction with the oocyte. BSPs (bovine seminal plasma protein, unigene 64,588 and unigene 69,768), fertilin (unigene 17,270 and unigene 27,136), ACE (Angiotensin converting enzyme, unigene 7,164 and unigene 21,069), GPX5 (glutathione peroxidase, epididymal secretory glutathione peroxidase, unigene15860), Spermadhesin-1 (Acidic seminal fluid protein, aSFP). The reproduction-related transcripts identified in the ASG and testis transcritptomes in E. This interaction of PDC-109 with the sperm cell membrane results in an efflux of cholesterol and choline phospholipids, that appears to be important for capacitation. The main changes in spermatozoa that occur during epididymal maturation are the ability to move, recognize and bind to the ZP, and to fuse with the plasma membrane of the oocyte.. Oct 2004, Adelaide, Australia. Ziaian T, Augostinos, M. Relationship Between Acculturation and Mental Well-being Among Young Persian Women Living in Australia. Paper presented at the Educational Research conference, 18th November 2004, Adelaide, Australia. Ziaian T, Stress Management: an introduction of holistic coping strategies. A Four day Course for the higher degree students. Targeted molecular therapy for advanced epithelial ovarian cancer. Minimally invasive surgery for gynecological cancer. Pharmaceutical Sciences from Shizuoka College of Pharmacy (1976, Japan). He has completed his B. Prophylactic removal of nevi without clinically worrisome characteristics is not recommended. The reasons for this are practical: many individuals in these families have a large number of nevi, and complete removal of them all is not feasible, since new atypical nevi continue to develop. In addition, individuals with increased susceptibility to melanoma may have cancer arise de novo, without a precursor lesion such as a nevus. The disadvantages of screening include the limitations of available noninvasive testing methods and the risks associated with invasive screening procedures. ERCP is the gold standard for http://www.jerseycanada.com/jerseyatlantic/fnt/ultramer.php identifying early cancers and precancerous lesions in the pancreas..