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The Rocker (2008)


Average Rating: 5.2/10
Reviews Counted: 123
Fresh: 51
Rotten: 72

Critics Consensus: With a predictable and lightweight story, the earnest efforts of the cast are squandered by The Rocker's bland script.

Average Rating: 5.3/10
Reviews Counted: 36
Fresh: 15
Rotten: 21

Critics Consensus: With a predictable and lightweight story, the earnest efforts of the cast are squandered by The Rocker's bland script.


Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 43,868


Movie Info

The Office star Rainn Wilson portrays a drummer named "Fish," who gets a second shot at fame 20 years after getting kicked out of his band on the very night they signed the record contract that made them stars. Fish has spent the past two decades languishing at soul-crushing day jobs while his old bandmates became legends, continuing to grace magazine covers and dominate the radio. He might just get another chance at musical success, however, when his teenage cousin invites him to drum for his … More

PG-13 (for drug and sexual references, nudity and language)
Drama , Comedy
Directed By:
Written By:
Wallace Wolodarsky , M. Wallace Wolodarsky , Maya Forbes , Wally Wolodarsky
In Theaters:
Jan 27, 2009
Box Office:
Fox Atomic - Official Site


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Critic Reviews for The Rocker

All Critics (124) | Top Critics (36) | Fresh (51) | Rotten (72) | DVD (11)

A whacked-out, superannuated, would-be rock star might seem to be too easy a comic target, but Wilson gives this sad sack so many fresh twists that he never wears out his welcome.

Full Review… | November 21, 2008
Christian Science Monitor
Top Critic

As a movie, it may not rock, but it rolls along nicely enough.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008
Time Out
Top Critic

It's a slave to formula, and it hits its marks satisfyingly enough to make for a pleasant time-passer, but Wilson and a loaded supporting cast are never as funny as they should be.

Full Review… | August 22, 2008
AV Club
Top Critic

The Rocker has the requisite vomit, the view of some very unfortunate hind quarters and the suds. It's also got a vein of sweetness and charm.

Full Review… | August 22, 2008
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic

The melody of The Rocker feels predictable but the beat is refreshingly off-kilter.

Full Review… | August 22, 2008
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

The film equivalent of an inoffensive throwaway track, what we used to call a B-side, back in the days of Vesuvius.

Full Review… | August 20, 2008
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

The Rocker is more Keane than Keith Moon: slow, safe and about as edgy as a tangerine.

Full Review… | October 14, 2012

More fun than a fifth of Rebel Yell and a bag of Quaaludes.

Full Review… | August 15, 2011
East Bay Express

Just because one is a scene stealer on TV does not mean he or she is big screen material, period, much less a movie star.

Full Review… | February 12, 2009 agreeable, sporadically hilarious comedy that benefits substantially from the almost uniformly strong performances.

Full Review… | February 6, 2009
Reel Film Reviews

All premise and no purpose.

Full Review… | January 29, 2009

Just when you think the dog days of summer movies are upon us along comes a hilarious sleeper hit.

Full Review… | November 20, 2008

Uh, Mr. Projectionist? Could you stop the movie? I wanna get off now.

Full Review… | October 18, 2008
Jam! Movies

The moments don't add up to much, though, and the dramatic arc ends up feeling even narrower than it usually is in this kind of story.

Full Review… | October 18, 2008
Screen International

This rock music comedy does has a few chuckles and belly laughs. And unlike a few other smug, self-satisfied comedies that have come along recently, this one at least seems to have a heart at its center.

Full Review… | October 18, 2008
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

Amiable enough yet unadventurous and uneven, this may coax the odd big smile from viewers but it never rocks the house.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008

There are occasionally amusing moments, but the writing lacks the warmth that made School of Rock such a hit.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008
Times [UK]

It all looks good and there's a decent cast but nothing really takes off.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008

Essentially covering the same playlist as Jack Black's School of Rock, The Rocker is a good-natured, live-the-dream lark in which the one-liners score hits but the slapstick continually misses.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008
Sky Movies

Worth your hard earned money if you're looking for some entertaining light entertainment.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008
Heart 106.2

Just the feelgood movie that everyone needs at the moment.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008
Sun Online

The film is untidy, cheery, sometimes amiable. If only it were funny too.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008
Financial Times

Director Peter Cattaneo will probably never repeat his Full Monty success, but even in its mediocre patches one senses a renewed eagerness to entertain.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008

The Rocker is certainly not This Is Spinal Tap, but it is fair to moderate entertainment and Rainn Wilson holds it all together energetically.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008
This is London

Audience Reviews for The Rocker

Only funny when it wants to be, "The Rocker" embraces the rocker-lifestyle stereotype, but does not fully deliver on a compelling enough story to satisfy me all the way through. Most of the time, the film feels like it is trying to be exactly like School of Rock but with a little more dark humour, and I didn't mind that, but most of the gags fall flat. It's not a bad movie, in fact, by the time the third act begins, it's quite enjoyable, which makes a very average comedy overall. I feel like this film could have had more to it, but there you go. "The Rocker" is a misfire in most areas, but it's not a bad film. With a dumb script, cheesy acting, and a borderline pedofile-esque plot line, this film is a one-and-done movie.

KJ Proulx
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

I saw this mainly for the brilliant Rainn Wilson and although I did enjoy it it wasn't quite as funny as I was hoping, or as it could of been methinks.
A slightly more mature 'School of Rock' type of plot which does work better with teens rather than kids but it just doesn't have quite enough cheek to it. Not outright soft porn but it could of done with being alittle bit more edgy as its dealing with rock n roll. Some good laugh moments but again not quite laugh out loud, more of a chuckle, but Wilson does make it better than it should be (straight to DVD rip of 'School of Rock' haha), and the rest of the cast do fit in pretty well too. One thing that did stand out over 'School of Rock' was the people and music in this film actually do come across as real rockers with real tunes, it all looks much more authentic, which helps of course.

Nice film with Wilson summing up the old sweaty has been drummer part very nicely, almost a surprise classic but not quite.

Phil Hubbs

Super Reviewer


Despite the energy and charisma of Rainn Wilson, The Rocker, have just a few funny scenes, bad script and that show a waste of talent by Wilson, others good comedians and the director of Dear Rosie and The Full Monty, Peter Cattaneo. Rotten.

Lucas Martins
Lucas Martins

Super Reviewer

Such an awesome movie. Rainn Wilson was hilarious (: The music was amazing and the other supporting credits from Christina Applegate, Emma Stone, Teddy Geiger, Josh Gad, Jane Lynch, Jeff Garlin, Fred Armisen, Bradley Cooper, Will Arnett and Jason Sudeikis were amazing as well. I also loved Aziz Ansari's small part in this movie as well. If you haven't watched it yet you're missing out on an freaking awesome band movie! (:

Cassie Hill

Super Reviewer

The Rocker Quotes

Robert "Fish" Fishman:
Some people carry a rabbits foot...I like to rock a pocket of puke.
– Submitted by Melissa T (2 years ago)
Robert "Fish" Fishman:
1991 called, they want their teen angst back.
They just called again, they want their joke back.
– Submitted by Jiashu X (2 years ago)
Robert "Fish" Fishman:
I will drag you down to Hell, I will eat your souls!
– Submitted by Sean C (2 years ago)
Robert "Fish" Fishman:
I'm a golden fish!
– Submitted by Lucas M (2 years ago)

Discussion Forum

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