Monday, January 26, 2009

The Rocker starring Rainn Wilson hits stores today on DVD and Blu-ray, but I got to check out an advanced copy over the weekend. Now the movie didn't do great when it came out in theaters and kind of just came and went, but I think that has a lot to do with all the comedy competition which came out about the same time, including Tropic Thunder and Pineapple Express. But I think The Rocker is worth your time as it's both pretty dang funny, but also has some awesome music as well.

Wilson stars as Robert "Fish" Fishman who was unceremoniously kicked out of his band, Vesuvius. (Will Arnett, Fred Armisen, and Bradley Cooper) Now it's 20 years later and while Vesuvius is the number 1 band in the country, Fish is a jobless, single washout living in his sisters tiny attic. But as luck would have it Fish's nephew Matt (the hilarious Josh Gad) and his band mates (Emma Stone and Teddy Geiger) are in need of a drummer for their gig playing prom.

From there to movie has the band, A.D.D., getting millions of hits on YouTube when an internet practice gets leaked online. (Fish doesn't exactly understand webcams and practices in the nude and the "Naked Drummer" becomes a phenomenon.) Along the way the band has some fun, some fights, and of course a run in with Vesuvius.

The movie is pretty basic, and anyone can see what's coming. But it's got some great music (supplied by Geiger who is an actual musician, and it's mostly his music in the movie) and quite a few hilarious scenes. Wilson of course is better known as Dwight K. Schrute on NBC's The Office and he brings some of those quirks with him to Fish, but he also adds a dash of 80s rock to the mix, and whereas Dwight is always over the top, Fish has an actual heart and he does a great job making you feel for the guy.

Stone does a good job playing the only girl in the band and is a lot like the other two characters she's played on the big screen in Superbad and The House Bunny. Geiger does a good job in his first movie role (he was previously on the short lived series Love Monkey) but it's his voice that really won him the role.

But the standout in the cast is Josh Gad. Previously seen as the station manager on Fox's Back to You, Gad steals pretty much every scene he's in with his dry delivery and heavy dose of sarcasm. He reminds me a lot of Jonah Hill, which is not a bad thing.

All in all The Rocker is not a bad way to spend a couple of hours. And the DVD has some great extras. I highly recommend the deleted scenes, which include a great bit with "The 5th Beatle" Pete Best. YOu can see the complete list of bonus features below:

* Commentary with director Peter Cattaneo and actor Rainn Wilson
* Commentary with actors Josh Gad, Teddy Geiger, Emma Stone and Jason Sudeikis
* 10 Deleted Scenes
* Gag Reel (including separate options of “Matt Gags” and “Vesuvius Gags”)
* Rainn Wilson: Office Rocker featurette
* Pete Best Interview featurette
* Behind The Band: Vesuvius featurette
* Rock Beat With Fish Fishman featurette
* The Music of The Rocker featurette
* Rock Tales featurette
* MTV Film Festival Panel
* Fox Movie Channel Presents…In Character With The Rocker
* “I’m Not Bitter” music video
* Four exclusive podcasts

The Rocker hits streets today, so go pick it up and let me know what you think.


joy said...

Thanks for tracking me down, CineManiac. I'm hoping that I'll be ok with one of the three that I have...silly Target. They like to advertise in my town, but they haven't opened up a location near me. (Heh, and I'm not truckin' out to Queens for them. Hahahah.)

Thanks, though!

Also, hmmm, I've not been to your site before, I shall spend some time...


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