This is pretty much the Hairspray of straight people. It’s raunchy, it’s hardcore and it’s cliche`, all in an attractive movie-musical package. The plot is simple: Sherrie Christian (Julianne Hough) and Drew Boley (Diego Boneta) meet at the Bourbon, a wild nightclub in L.A, and from there the usual plotline unfolds. They have their trials and tribulations, have sex, blah blah blah. Meanwhile, Stacee Jaxx (Tom Cruise) is hitting a troubled time in his career, when making good music is second place to women and alcohol, so most of his screen time consists of either erotic foreplay or his bartender monkey giving him another scotch. And along the way favorite actors such as Alec Baldwin as Dennis Dupree and Russell Brand as Lonny Barnett make their own appearances as at first club owners and later homosexual lovers (to be continued in a few paragraphs).
What the plot doesn’t do, the outrageous acting does. It’s over-the-top, crude, hysterical at times and overall funny. Tom Cruise really pulls off the drunk and dazed rocker to a T, while characters such as Catherine Zeta-Jones who plays Patricia Whitmore (the mayor’s wife) goes all out with her anti-rock ‘n roll persona. It’s diverse and, at times, even a bit too much. Dennis Dupree and Lonny Barnett’s bromance at the beginning was alright, but when tongues collided in the name of rock things got a little uncomfortable. Them dancing while reminiscing about minigolf is okay, but the kiss… well, it’s definitely not forgettable.
Aside from an awesome lineup of actors, what makes this movie-musical shine? The music, of course! The tunes are what it’s all about, and hearing the guy from Mission Impossible sing Wanted Dead or Alive is all kinds of awesome. Other favorites such as Jukebox Hero are present, and everyone sings their own songs which results in some awesome cover versions.
Overall, Rock of Ages is pretty awesome in its own way. There’s nothing else quite like it, and it definitely makes you jealous if you’re not an 80’s kid. While the vulgarity (sex, rude humor and all those other things parents hate) might turn off some, it’s a darn good rock ‘n roll movie.