Mark Wahlberg, Jennifer Anniston
| Directed By :
When I first heard that there was going to be a movie inspired
by the life of Tim "Ripper" Owens - the singer who joined
Judas Priest after Rob Halford left - I was intrigued.
When it was announced that Zakk Wylde, Blas Elias, Jeff Pilson
and Jason Bonham were going to have substantial roles in the
film, I thought that Rock Star was going to be a fun,
yet respectful, look at the heavy metal scene.
But I should have known better. Rock Star defecates
in the face of every metalhead on the planet. Rather than
pay affectionate tribute to a largely misunderstood genre,
Rock Star presents the metal scene as nothing more
than an adolescent phase on the way to growing up and embracing
acoustic bull**** "sensitive guy" music.
Up until the end, Rock Star is a moderately entertaining
but confused movie. What is it? A comedy with no real laughs?
A drama with no truly dramatic moments? The acting is, for
the most part, good, even though Mark Wahlberg and Jennifer
Aniston are too old for the characters they play. The screenplay
is, well, predictable.
The story is set during the 1980's and is about Chris Cole
(Mark Wahlberg), a super-fan of the rock band "Steel Dragon."
When the gay lead singer is kicked out of the band (either
portray the Halford character realistically or change everything
about the character, people - Halford LEFT Priest), Cole is
brought in to replace him. Along the way, he learns that (let's
sing it altogether, kids - you know the verse, chorus, verse!)
singing in a heavy metal band is not fulfilling in the way
that acoustic bull**** "sensitive guy" music is, and the girl
next door is "the one." Even though Jennifer Aniston does
not live next door to me.
It is the depiction of the heavy metal scene that disappointed
me as both a film and music fan. While it was accurate in
some aspects, it continued the media trend of portraying metal
as a form of 1980's nostalgia - even though the story it was
inspired by happened during the mid-1990's. Rock Star
somehow tries to both pander to and condescend to the metal
Now I am not going to sit here and claim that heavy metal
does not have it's share of cheese. In fact, that is often
times part of it's charm. But to insinuate that heavy metal
is musically inferior and shallow is an insult to fans of
the style. Some of us would prefer to listen to a band named
"Steel Dragon" than acoustic bull**** "sensitive guy" music.
There is one saving grace about this film, and that is the
music. I will actually pick up the soundtrack, as the songs
performed by "Steel Dragon" were excellent, 1980's-style metal
- with that familiar Zakk Wylde touch to them. Musically,
it has no relevance to today's metal scene, but it's good,
- Ruthven (listening to Opeth)