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Finally! Somebody has done right by Jack Black. Somebody has actually
made a movie where Jack Black can be the man and show off his talents.
This is Jack Black at his best and I feel privileged to be alive while
this guy's star continues to skyrocket!
Dewey Finn (Jack Black) loves rock and roll. He is the consummate fan who knows every worthwhile group and song. He is a singer, songwriter, and guitarist in his own band called "No Vacancy." But other members of the group have grown tired of his immature stage antics, such as 20-minute solos and stage-dives. They vote him out and hire someone to replace him for an upcoming Battle of the Bands contest.
Downcast and distraught, Dewey doesn't know what to do. Plus, his usually patient roommate Ned (Mike White), a schoolteacher, is being pressured by his aggressive girlfriend (Sarah Silverman) to make Dewey pay the money he owes for rent or get out. When a call comes in to Ned asking him to serve as a substitute teacher at the prestigious Horace Green Elementary School, Dewey decides to assume his identity and take the job.
Of course, faced with a class of fifth-graders all nicely clothed in their school uniforms, this rocker doesn't have a clue as to what to do. So he tells them to chill out and enjoy some downtime. This scheme works for a little while but then Dewey visits the orchestra class. Lights go off in his head and bingo! -- the new class project is to form a rock band. He decides to teach them everything he knows about rock with lectures on its history, the evils of "The Man," and the essentials of playing rock songs.
Dewey's spirits are lifted when he realizes that there are some talented musicians in the class including Zack (Joey Gaydos, Jr.), the lead guitarist; Katie (Rebecca Brown) on bass; and Lawrence (Robert Tsai) on keyboards. Freddy (Kevin Clark), the class rebel, turns out to be an eager learner on drums, and Tomika (Maryam Hassan) surprises him with her unusual singing talent. The smartest girl in the class, Summer (Miranda Cosgrove), gets her chance to excel as band manager while others serve as back-up singers, special effects wizard, head of security, and the official selectors of the band's name.
The humor quotient of the film is heightened by the funny performance of Joan Cusack as the uptight and unlocked principal of Horace Green Elementary School. When Dewey discovers that she is a secret fan of Fleetwood Mac, they are able to connect as friends. The rock fan gets his wish when he has the class entered in the local Battle of the Bands. By the end of this rollicking film, you'll happily be chanting, "For those about to rock, we salute you!"
A quick glance at the story or trailer tells you that School of Rock is
probably the cheesiest, gratuitous, airhead excuse for a movie in ages, but
if you thought that was a good reason to avoid it you'd be wrong. Jack Black
plays the slightly past it rocker, stuck in a groove of 70s heavy metal rock
and roll and refusing to move on until his (more up to date) band fire
him. Struggling to pay the rent, he takes a phone call intended for his
schoolteacher flatmate and accepts a job as supply teacher at a top school.
Soon he has the kids not only studying the history of rock and roll,
soundproofing the room and playing rock instruments, but actually competing
in a major Battle of the Bands' competition.
Unbelievable? Yes. What's more unbelievable is that somehow the whole thing works Jack Black's over-the-top enthusiasm for his subject is contagious, the edge-of-disaster suspense is continued throughout the length of the movie, and by the end the audience is so desperate to see how the kids (who they all play their own instruments by the way) perform in the concert that seat wetting would probably go unnoticed. Joan Cusack, as the gobsmacked headmistress, delivers a performance that is worth the price of your cinema ticket in itself. Achieving such tears-down-the cheeks laughter and adrenalin-packed excitement for air guitar music is nothing short of miraculous.
School of Rock is a movie that promises entertainment and delivers. Everything is as it says on the packet. For sheer feelgood factor, this movie is unbeatable and you can even take the kids!
Glancing at what other people have written about this movie, it seems that
these individuals are taking this film a bit too seriously. Worrying about
the "messages" this movie is delivering? Come on, there is no way that the
con that Jack Black's character pulls off could ever get far in the real
world! I don't think any sane person watching this movie would take this
seriously. This is a comedy, for crying out loud, made to make us
I thought Black was fine in this movie. Sure, maybe his character is a little one-note with his proclamations of "rock on" and "stick it to the man", but Black somehow manages to do it over and over without being boring. He's unbelievably energetic AND versatile, delivering these same things in different ways each time that prevent the movie from getting into a rut. I think it's safe to say that only Black himself could have made this role work so well.
There is plenty of humor and great music. Even my senior citizen parents kept laughing, and told me after it was over that they enjoyed the rock soundtrack as well. It's a great movie for the whole family. Why was this rated PG-13? Sure, there are some references to stuff like alcohol and groupies, but they are not emphasized at all in their brief passing - and your kids will already have seen these kind of things treated much worse elsewhere! In fact, here in British Columbia, the ratings board gave it a "G" rating.
What can I say? I'm a rockaholic. I eat, breath, and dream of classic
rock and it's glory days. I listen to only rock radios, and every other
morning I go on an AC/DC Binge. Rock is pure, and beautiful.
Unfortunately, it's not the only music out there.
Pop culture today sucks, putting it nicely. All that stuff out there is ruining the minds of people of today. For a little while it seems like rock disappeared, hiding underneath everything else, being disregarded by fans today.
Then 'School of Rock' came along.
Dewey Finn (played by Jack Black) is a bum who gets himself kicked out of his own band because of his unruly antics. To top this off, his substitute teacher roommate Ned and Ned's girlfriend Patti begin to nag Dewey for rent money. Dewey can't pay it off. After spending some time trying to sell his personal belongings, a phone call from a prestigious prep school looking for a substitute teacher catches Dewey's attention and he parades around as Ned, hoping to just walk in, let the kids do what they want, get some money, and be gone like nothing every happened.
Until he finds out that the class of fifth graders he has been assigned to teach are musically and vocally talented.
This sparks an idea off in Dewey's mind, thinking that he can turn his group of fifth graders into a rock group so that he can win 25,000 dollars in a contest called 'The Battle of the Bands'.
This is a wonderful, classic - rock fueled movie. Jack Black is hysterical as Dewey Finn. The children are all talented, particularly the ones on instruments and vocals.
If you want to love rock music, go watch this movie.
If not, then you'll have missed out on something great.
Greetings again from the darkness. With so few good comedies these days, it was pure joy to laugh out loud a few times during this Jack Black showcase. Is he over the top? Absolutely. Is his humor and delivery similar to the great John Belushi? Yes, down to the arching eyebrows. And I say SO WHAT? Jack Black is hilarious in this movie and director Richard Linklater (the underappreciated gem "Dazed and Confused") uses his spot-on observations of Rock music and school days to deliver a wonderful film going experience. Writer Mike White ("The Good Girl") also plays Black's wimpy friend and former bandmate. Although his acting is fine, it is White's writing that will make him rich in Hollywood. The kids in the band are wonderfully cast and appear to be very talented musically as well. Special recognition to Joan Cusack, who just nails the role of the uptight private school principal who is just itching to be unleashed. I would have enjoyed a bit more of the Rock History tossed in for the sake of today's youngsters, but the tributes to Pete Townsend, Jimi Hendrix, Zeppelin and the Ramones are much appreciated. Look for Nikki Katt in a brief role, but mostly just sit back and enjoy a pure comedy that truly ROCKS!!
Dewey Finn is a lazy freeloader and a guitarist in a rock band who
plays gigs every night and sleeps every day, in his friend Ned
Schneebly's apartment. One day as he shows up late for band practice he
notices a new guitar player who is replacing him. Poor Dewey feels so
bad about it and also about Ned and his girlfriend threatening to kick
him out since he doesn't pay any of the bills. After a few days of
trying to sell his guitars, which doesn't go very well, the head of a
school calls and asks for Ned Schneebly, who is a talented substitute
teacher with a good reputation. In a desperate attempt to getting money
fast, Dewey impersonates Ned and conveniently finds himself the teacher
of a third grade ( or something like that ) class for several weeks
ahead. Yet another one of his crazy ideas strikes him and his plan to
turn his class into a rockband to win the Battle of the Bands
competition is set in motion.
School Of Rock is a great feel-good comedy, fun for just about anyone of any age, kids or adults. Jack Black does carry a lot of this film on his own but I won't be too harsh on the kids in the movie, they did very well also. If anyone else should play Dewey Finn rather than Jack, it just wouldn't be the same. Since Jack is actually in a rock band in real life, and has played a few characters in films before who are also into music, he just seemed to fit right into this film. His real passion for rock music helps a lot in this film, and makes Dewey Finn one hell of a good character. The plot to this film is really good I think and Mike White did a great job on the screenplay. As did Linklater on the direction of the film.
This comedy should not be ignored just because there are kids in it, I enjoyed it a hell of a lot and you probably will too.
After being fired from his own band, the guitar player Dewey Finn (Jack
Black) needs to raise some money to pay for his rent and his bills.
When his friend and school teacher Ned Schneebly (Mike White) is called
to a temporary work in an expensive private school, Dewey pretends to
be Ned and accepts the job. He finds talented young musicians in his
class, and he decides to form a rock-and-roll band with the students
and win a competition called "Battle of Bands" to raise the prize and
be recognized in the show business.
"The School of Rock" is a very funny and politically incorrect comedy tailored for Jack Black. He steals the movie and rocks in the role of a rock-and-roll lover, who dreams to be successful as a guitar player. Most of the lines belong to him, and I believe this movie is his best individual performance in his successful career. Joan Cusack is excellent as usual, and Miranda Cosgrove seems to have potential and be a great promise as actress. The soundtrack is a great homage to rock-and-roll, with many classics including Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song". The DVD is full of worthwhile Extras, and in the end this film is an excellent funny entertainment. My vote is eight.
Title (Brazil): "Escola de Rock" ("School of Rock")
Has anyone noticed that School Of Rock is like a modern, rock version,
and 10-millions times better version of Sound Of Music? Both are about
a teacher who spends time with a small group of kids and inspires true
music in them. Anyone who is 50-90 years old loves the Sound of Music,
as a member of the younger generation today I think it's safe to say
The School of Rock is the "Sound of Music" version of the new
millennia, because I doubt another movie in the next 100 or maybe even
1000 years with the same plot (teacher inspiring kids with music) will
do better than School Of Rock, just like no movie between 1900-2000 did
better than the Sound Of Music in this regard.
Jack Black's passion for the music is obviously sincere and true, just like the teacher lady in the Sound Of Music passionately cared about music and proceeded to teach the children the basic of doe ray memes while running through grassy fields. The Sound Of Music is the mushy Brady Bunch goody goody corny serious set-in-world war II version (which can be enjoyable), the School Of Rock is the hard and humorous and much more up to date version. In the Sound Of Music the main character's main plight was surviving the harsh realities of Nazi World War II along with her love interest; in the School Of Rock, Jack Black's main plight is to survive the commercialization of music (instead of Nazism), i.e. getting kicked off his own band while his band members replaced him with a gorgeous dude with a great body who is more marketable, and seeing that today's elementary kids are fed nothing but crap music. See how it is all modernized more up to date? Basically, the School of Rock ROCKS!
After distinguishing himself in any number of memorable supporting
roles, Jack Black finally comes into his own in "The School of Rock," a
sporadically funny comedy that is part "Sister Act" and part genial
spoof of all those movies about a "super teacher" who brings meaning
and purpose to the lives of his students.
Black plays Dewey Finn, an aging rock'n'roller who is still awaiting that moment when he will "make it big" in the music world. He lives with Ned Schneebly, his longtime rocker buddy, who has traded in his dreams of musical glory for a nagging girlfriend and a job as a substitute teacher. Desperate for money to pay the rent, Dewey pretends to be Schneebly and takes a job as a sub at a snooty, tradition-bound prep school, where the last thing the administration and the parents would want is a Jimmy Hendricks knockoff teaching their kids. And since Dewey really only knows one thing, this uncredentialed professorial imposter decides to make rock'n'roll the sole focus of his curriculum, turning these inward, shy, nerdish kids into a viable rock band - all under the radar screen of the ever-watchful administrators and parents of course.
Although the storyline wends its way along a predictable path, writer Mike White and director Richard Linklater find a great deal of warmth and humor in the material. Dewey's utter obsession with rock music and rock history is reflected in the fact that he leads the band members in a prayer to the "god of rock" before a concert, and screams in frustration - "What have they been teaching you kids at this school?" - when he finds out his pupils have never been educated in the basics of Hendricks, Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath. Dewey is so preposterously well-meaning and good-natured that the audience can't help but root for him and his students as they embark on their mad quest to appear at a local battle of the bands competition, unbeknownst to the powers-that-be at the school.
The children playing the students are all winning and charming, and Joan Cusack cuts a sympathetic figure as the uptight school principal who harbors a little bit of Stevie Nicks under her prim and proper exterior. But it is Black who makes this film his own, turning what might have been a buffoonish caricature into a fully-rounded human being. Black is not afraid to cut loose and take over the screen when necessary, hitting heights of unbridled mania to rival the master, Jim Carrey. Yet, he also realizes that he is part of an ensemble effort here and understands the importance of integrating himself into the material and not always dominating it. As a result, even when certain elements of the film fall flat, as they frequently do, Black is always there to prop the movie back up.
"The School of Rock" is an entertaining little comedy, but unlike a real satire which would skewer the conventions of the genre it is attacking, this film loses its nerve and winds up endorsing those conventions. Dewey, for all his talk about defying "The Man," is really a rebel in name only, and the film reflects the kind of feel-good populism that no true hard line iconoclast would be caught dead supporting. I guess it's too much to expect a mainstream Hollywood comedy to launch a truly savage assault on mainstream values (in the way rock, at its best, often does). Still, it might be nice to come across the unexpected sometime (after all, movies like "Dr. Strangelove" and "MASH" were able to do it).
Until then, we'll settle for what we can get. And Jack Black is good enough for now.
I like it, I like it, yes indeed!
With a Judy Garland/Mickey Rooney plot, this movie takes a terrific comic and musical turn and is a totally enjoyable, fun, and informative ride!
I liked that Jack Black always treated his students with positive reinforcement, which is really important if someone is ever to have the guts to go on stage. He was never down or discouraging unless it was a very funny down and
discouraging! And never about the students themselves.
I like Jack Black, I love this movie, and I love rock'n'roll above all else!
Forget the clichés. Let yourself have fun.
And stick it to the man!!!!!!
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