Youâ€™d think making a comedy about rock would be easy, but Spinal Tap pretty much used up most of the good jokes. The video store shelves are lined with decent attempts to mine laughs from the world of rock music that never really manage to elicit more than a few chuckles (viewed sober, of course).
Airheads, School of Rock even Wayneâ€™s World were all good for a few laughs, but never as good as you remembered. And The Rocker is no different. Itâ€™s a decent concept, with a stellar supporting cast, but will hardly be one you quote years from now. Rainn Wilson (The Office) plays Robert â€œFishâ€ Fishman, a former drummer still stuck in spandex clad hey day of the late 80â€™s/early 90â€™s who never got over being dumped from his hair metal band who went on to become Rolling Stone cover boys.
After playing a disastrous set backing up his teenage nephewâ€™s emo band at prom, he worms his way into the band and they mange to get discovered through the Internet, signed to a label and thrown on the road in that only-in-a-90-minute-comedy-movie way things happen. Wilson does a decent job with what heâ€™s given and the others, including Jeff Garlin (Curb Your Enthusiasm), Jane Lynch (Best in Show) and Jason Sudeikis (Saturday Night Live) all mange to rise above the movie as well. The Rocker may not be Spinal Tap, but it could be a whole lot worse.
Rating: 6.9 out of 10
The Rocker/2009 20th Century Fox / 102 minutes/ www.foxhome.com