The Rocker - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Rocker Reviews

Top Critic
Stephen Garrett
Time Out
November 17, 2011
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
November 21, 2008
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 | Original Score: B+
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Wally Hammond
Time Out
October 17, 2008
As a movie, it may not rock, but it rolls along nicely enough.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/6
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Scott Tobias
AV Club
August 22, 2008
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.
Read More | Original Score: c+
Top Critic
Joanne Kaufman
Wall Street Journal
August 22, 2008
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.
Top Critic
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
August 22, 2008
The melody of The Rocker feels predictable but the beat is refreshingly off-kilter.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Darel Jevens
Chicago Sun-Times
August 20, 2008
The film equivalent of an inoffensive throwaway track, what we used to call a B-side, back in the days of Vesuvius.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
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J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
August 20, 2008
The conflicts that arise are highly predictable. But there are plenty of funny moments, as well as a sweet subplot involving the unkempt drummer and the guitarist's no-nonsense mom.
Top Critic
Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
August 20, 2008
A grubby little redemption comedy that in every way feels like a consignment-shop Jack Black vehicle.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Stephen Hunter
Washington Post
August 20, 2008
If only the movie had some bite, some edge, some anger, some insight. Instead it's generic, staying far away from the darker temptations of the rock scene.
Top Critic
Philip Marchand
Toronto Star
August 20, 2008
The Rocker is an amiable comedy, so efficiently constructed that you can practically see the computer software on how to write comedy screenplays at work. Nonetheless it is an enjoyable construction.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Ted Fry
Seattle Times
August 20, 2008
An innocuous late-summer entry that barely rises above the level of sitcom alternative to Olympic-coverage overload.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
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Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
August 20, 2008
The Rocker feels safe, a long way from the cutting edge, a PG guy in a PG-13 movie, a comedy with too much 'parental guidance' to be rock 'n' roll.
Read More | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
August 20, 2008
If this isn't the laugh riot of the year, it's still a pleasant surprise, particularly for teen audiences. And in comedy seasons like this one, that's sometimes more than enough.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Rafer Guzman
Newsday
August 20, 2008
The Rocker qualifies as a B-side, but it still makes for a passable summer single.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Stephen Holden
New York Times
August 20, 2008
Watching Rainn Wilson gyrate in The Rocker, you can't help wondering if Mr. Wilson is inhabiting a role that was originally turned down by Jack Black.
Read More | Original Score: 2/5
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Lou Lumenick
New York Post
August 20, 2008
Manages to be a notably funnier than average summer comedy despite being a fairly shameless rip-off of School of Rock.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News
August 20, 2008
While nobody's expecting This Is Spinal Tap, both the audience and the cast -- which is strong all around -- deserve better than the generic script and bland direction here.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Top Critic
Tom Long
Detroit News
August 20, 2008
It sort of gurgles, with some pleasant-sounding pops here and there. But this is essentially a film that squanders a good idea by playing things too safely.
Full Review | Original Score: C-
Top Critic
Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
August 20, 2008
How much you ultimately like The Rocker will inevitably depend on how much you like Wilson. And a little goes a long way.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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David Wiegand
San Francisco Chronicle
August 20, 2008
You want to like almost everyone in this film, but they're all undone by a weak script that really wasn't worth more than a Gilmore Girls subplot after all.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
James Hannaham
Salon.com
August 20, 2008
It's not exactly heartwarming to realize that The Rocker's Gen X fantasy of an escape from middle age is really a developmental nightmare.
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
August 20, 2008
I don't want to oversell The Rocker, but in a summer of erratic, assaultive comedies all up and down the budget scale, this Rainn Wilson vehicle -- a kind of Home School of Rock -- stakes out its own corner of the market.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
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Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
August 19, 2008
Jack Black's fearless, foolish ferocity is missing.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Sam Adams
Los Angeles Times
August 19, 2008
Like its protagonist, the movie is sweet but slow and a little out of date.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Top Critic
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
August 19, 2008
Two great cuts don't make an album and two fine supporting performances don't make The Rocker worthwhile.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Top Critic
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
August 19, 2008
The Rocker might really have rocked if it didn't feel like a cover of a couple of superior comedies.
Top Critic
Claudia Puig
USA Today
August 19, 2008
Audiences would be better served staying home and playing Rock Band than wasting their time on something as leaden and unfunny as The Rocker.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Top Critic
Robert Wilonsky
Village Voice
August 19, 2008
A juvenile fairy tale that plays like the pilot for a Jonas Brothers sitcom on the Disney Channel, The Rocker comes off as something penned by an old dude who hasn't bought music since it was sold 'on records.'
Top Critic
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
August 18, 2008
It is a goofy and amusing late summer film with more than enough laughs to recommend it.
Top Critic
David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
August 18, 2008
It's depressing when the best thing you can say about a comedy is that its second-rateness is pleasantly in sync with its unmagnetic hero.
Top Critic
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
August 15, 2008
The only brazen thing about the film is how shamelessly it rips off School of Rock.
Full Review | Original Score: C-
Top Critic
Frank Scheck
Hollywood Reporter
July 28, 2008
This satire about an aging heavy metal drummer finds a good comic rhythm.
Top Critic
Peter Debruge
Variety
July 23, 2008
[A] well-crafted, feel-good satire.
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
July 22, 2008
This is pre-packaged entertainment, a product designed to give bored teenagers something to watch on a Friday or Saturday night when steamy summer nights are getting longer and Labor Day is just around the corner.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4