Reviews: Star-Studded ‘Rock of Ages’ Entertains

Tom Cruise, Julianne Hough, Catherine Zeta-Jones and more star in Broadway musical-turned movie “Rock of Ages.”

Tom Cruise in bottomless chaps?

That’s what “Rock of Ages” viewers are in for according to Steven Whitty of The Star Ledger.

“Rock of Ages” is a Broadway musical-turned movie set in the 80s. A small town girl (Julianne Hough) and a big city boy (Diego Boneta) -- both hoping to make it big in Hollywood -- meet on the Sunset Strip.

Their love story is intertwined with a cast of other characters including Stacee Jaxx (Tom Cruise) who Whitty described as “basically Axl Rose with a few more thorns, an unpredictable and slightly mad star in bottomless chaps.”

But is the movie worth watching?

“I was ready for ‘Rock of Ages.’ I wanted nothin' but a good time. I was reasonably ready to rock. The movie, full of talented performers in search of a more propulsive vehicle, settles for workmanlike cover-band status, which makes this a cover-band tribute to a jukebox musical — a long way from true, trashy exhilaration,” wrote Michael Phillips of the Chicago Tribune.

Associated Press critic Christy Lemire shared a similar opinion of the movie.

“Sure, the characters are all broad types, from fresh-faced newcomers with dreams of stardom to grizzled, cynical veterans who’ve seen it all,” Lemire wrote. “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.”

Marshall Fine of Hollywood and Fine admitted he thought he would dislike the movie, but ended up enjoying it despite his hatred of 80s pop music. The movie features nearly two dozen songs from 80s groups including Def Leppard, Foreigner, Twisted Sister, Scorpion, Whitesnake, Journey, Poison and REO Speedwagon.

“While my opinion of the music hasn’t changed, I had fun watching the movie,” Fine wrote.

The music, Fine added, even makes the movie fun.

“The music is repurposed with a purpose, with each number given imaginative choreography and story-telling moments that surprise and amuse,” he wrote.

"Rock of Ages" also stars Russell Brand, Paul Giamatti, Catherine Zeta- Jones, Mary J. Blige and Alec Baldwin. The movie is rated PG-13 for sexual content, suggestive dancing, some heavy drinking, and language.



Carmike Cinema

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