8.5/10
583,651
974 user 561 critic

Whiplash (2014)

Trailer
2:08 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
A promising young drummer enrolls at a cut-throat music conservatory where his dreams of greatness are mentored by an instructor who will stop at nothing to realize a student's potential.

Director:

Damien Chazelle

Writer:

Damien Chazelle
Reviews
Popularity
375 ( 67)

Director's Trademarks: The Films of Damien Chazelle

First Man director Damien Chazelle's cinematic world is populated by characters driven by singular ambition and framed with technical and stylistic flourishes.

Watch our guide to Damien's films

Top Rated Movies #43 | Won 3 Oscars. Another 89 wins & 136 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Forrest Gump (1994)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

The presidencies of Kennedy and Johnson, Vietnam, Watergate, and other history unfold through the perspective of an Alabama man with an IQ of 75.

Director: Robert Zemeckis
Stars: Tom Hanks, Robin Wright, Gary Sinise
Fight Club (1999)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

An insomniac office worker and a devil-may-care soapmaker form an underground fight club that evolves into something much, much more.

Director: David Fincher
Stars: Brad Pitt, Edward Norton, Meat Loaf
Se7en (1995)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

Two detectives, a rookie and a veteran, hunt a serial killer who uses the seven deadly sins as his motives.

Director: David Fincher
Stars: Morgan Freeman, Brad Pitt, Kevin Spacey
The Departed (2006)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

An undercover cop and a mole in the police attempt to identify each other while infiltrating an Irish gang in South Boston.

Director: Martin Scorsese
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson
Interstellar (2014)
Adventure | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

A team of explorers travel through a wormhole in space in an attempt to ensure humanity's survival.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain
Inception (2010)
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

A thief who steals corporate secrets through the use of dream-sharing technology is given the inverse task of planting an idea into the mind of a CEO.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

A young FBI cadet must receive the help of an incarcerated and manipulative cannibal killer to help catch another serial killer, a madman who skins his victims.

Director: Jonathan Demme
Stars: Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Lawrence A. Bonney
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

Mathilda, a 12-year-old girl, is reluctantly taken in by Léon, a professional assassin, after her family is murdered. Léon and Mathilda form an unusual relationship, as she becomes his protégée and learns the assassin's trade.

Director: Luc Besson
Stars: Jean Reno, Gary Oldman, Natalie Portman
Pulp Fiction (1994)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.9/10 X  

The lives of two mob hitmen, a boxer, a gangster's wife, and a pair of diner bandits intertwine in four tales of violence and redemption.

Director: Quentin Tarantino
Stars: John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Samuel L. Jackson
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A former neo-nazi skinhead tries to prevent his younger brother from going down the same wrong path that he did.

Director: Tony Kaye
Stars: Edward Norton, Edward Furlong, Beverly D'Angelo
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

Following the Normandy Landings, a group of U.S. soldiers go behind enemy lines to retrieve a paratrooper whose brothers have been killed in action.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Tom Sizemore
The Pianist (2002)
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A Polish Jewish musician struggles to survive the destruction of the Warsaw ghetto of World War II.

Director: Roman Polanski
Stars: Adrien Brody, Thomas Kretschmann, Frank Finlay
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Miles Teller ... Andrew
J.K. Simmons ... Fletcher
Paul Reiser ... Jim Neimann
Melissa Benoist ... Nicole
Austin Stowell ... Ryan
Nate Lang Nate Lang ... Carl Tanner
Chris Mulkey ... Uncle Frank
Damon Gupton ... Mr. Kramer
Suanne Spoke ... Aunt Emma
Max Kasch ... Dorm Neighbor
Charlie Ian Charlie Ian ... Dustin
Jayson Blair ... Travis
Kofi Siriboe ... Bassist (Nassau)
Kavita Patil ... Assistant - Sophie
C.J. Vana ... Metz
Edit

Storyline

A young and talented drummer attending a prestigious music academy finds himself under the wing of the most respected professor at the school; one who does not hold back on abuse towards his students. The two form an odd relationship as the student wants to achieve greatness, and the professor pushes him. Written by andrewhodkinson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The road to greatness can take you to the edge

Genres:

Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong language including some sexual references | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 October 2014 (Philippines) See more »

Also Known As:

Whiplash See more »

Filming Locations:

Santa Clarita, California, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$3,300,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$135,388, 10 October 2014, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$13,092,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$48,982,041
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS | Datasat

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.40 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The screenplay for this film was featured in the 2012 Blacklist; a list of the "most liked" unmade scripts of the year. See more »

Goofs

Twice in the movie there are shots of trumpets where the film was reversed so it appears that a trumpet is the reverse of how it is actually constructed. As an example, on a real trumpet, the lead pipe runs along the right side of the trumpet, and in the movie, there are two shots where the lead pipe is running along the left side. It appears that this was done so that the direction of the band - director being shown to the left with the horns blowing toward the left from the right - could be maintained. See more »

Quotes

Terence Fletcher: We have a squeaker today, class. His name is Andrew Nieman, he's 19 years old. Isn't he cute?
See more »

Connections

References Taxi Driver (1976) See more »

Soundtracks

Keep Me Waiting
Written by Dana Williams & Maxwell Drummey
Performed by Dana Williams
By arrangement with David Adcock @ 505GRP
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
A pair of outstanding performances by Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons embody Damien Chazelle's piece of perfection...
27 September 2014 | by ClaytonDavisSee all my reviews

When it comes to cinema, there are often little gems in a sea of bigger spectacles, that can break through in the most proficient way. Last year, I pleaded to the entire film universe that discover and understand "Inside Llewyn Davis" from the Coen Brothers after seeing it for the first time at NYFF. This year, I've seem to already come to terms that the next film that will utilize all my energy and resources this year will be Damien Chazelle's highly intense psychological drama "Whiplash." An impeccable and tightly wound experience that brings your anxiety to a feverish level. As small, and utterly different as I'm about to compare, I haven't felt this uneasy with a film's tension since Paul Greengrass' "Captain Phillips," coincidentally also was a NYFF title. Two other similar traits that embody the two are the intense and completely submersible performances that inhabit them. Stars Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons are absolutely astonishing, featuring two of the year's very best turns.

Chazelle's film tells the story of Andrew (Teller), a first year music student that seeks out and joins the prestigious school band, headed by an intense and frightening teacher Mr. Fletcher (Simmons).

Walking out of the screening I fully knew (though I fully hope to be proved wrong this year) that Miles Teller would be my "Oscar Isaac" this year. A performance that should shoot to the top of any awards consideration for a lead actor, but unfortunately will be passed over show after show. Teller is submerged in a way that we haven't seen the young actor achieve at this stage in his career. After plowing onto the scene opposite Nicole Kidman in "Rabbit Hole," and then helming "The Spectacular Now" with complete ease and intensity, I was not expecting him to be the machine of fury and magnitude that is on display in "Whiplash." There are moments where he channels the emotional aura of performances like Tom Hulce/F. Murray Abraham in "Amadeus," as crazy as that sounds. I am so excited to see where Teller goes from here. It makes the future of film a lot more bright, knowing that someone like him will be rising up in the ranks.

Everything you've heard about J.K. Simmons is true and then some. A fully fleshed out supporting role, Chazelle doesn't write Fletcher as a caricature. He's a deeply acute individual, full of passion and acrimony. Chazelle doesn't keep Simmons at a "10," he and Simmons allow him to find a range of empathy, hatred, and cryptic allowances that will keep you at the edge of your seat. As I watched Simmons flesh out a performance that can only be described as magnificent, I kept coming back in my mind to Christoph Waltz in the Oscar-winning "Inglourious Basterds," a role that found much heat on the awards circuit. The world/all film lovers will not be able ignore the stunning presence of Simmons. A Supporting Actor nominations (maybe even a win) seems all but assured (and deserved). Looking back at the veteran actor's career that included memorable roles in "Juno," "Burn After Reading," and "Up in the Air," a role like this could not have come at a better time. Already impressive in his brief work in Jason Reitman's "Men, Women & Children," writers, directors, casting agents, and producers will be pounding on the actor's door.

You can't credit "Whiplash" without citing the words and control by writer/director Damien Chazelle. An amazing and outstanding sophomore effort (unfortunately have not seen his debut "Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench") that channels a young Bennett Miller. Vigorous, self-assured, and innovative, Chazelle is a brilliant auteur filmmaker that knows exactly what type of films he wants to make. He takes inspiration from his own life, his love of film and music, and other places I'm sure we don't know about, and molds them into a gritty, layered experience, conditioned with rich characters, all realized through the writer's story. It's one of the best scripts of the year.

"Whiplash" features some of the best minutes of film seen in 2014. An ending that will bring tears to your eyes, dual performances that will have you applaud, and an experience that you surely will not forget. Drumming has never felt like such a personality. It acts as a visible tool for the viewer to understand and try. If you love music, appreciate education, and dare to be better than your current state, you will find something very real to latch onto. Hold on, and hold on tight.

"Whiplash" is being distributed by Sony Pictures Classics and will be released October 10 in limited release (and then expanding after). A must-see for all movie lovers!


161 of 242 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 974 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed