The Tomatometer rating – based on the published opinions of hundreds of film and television critics – is a trusted measurement of movie and TV programming quality for millions of moviegoers. It represents the percentage of professional critic reviews that are positive for a given film or television show.
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The Tomatometer is 60% or higher.
The Tomatometer is 59% or lower.
Movies and TV shows are Certified Fresh with a steady Tomatometer of 75% or higher after a set amount of reviews (80 for wide-release movies, 40 for limited-release movies, 20 for TV shows), including 5 reviews from Top Critics.
Percentage of users who rate a movie or TV show positively.
Bandslam is hardly the definition of a great movie, but it is pleasant and bright and doesn't insult its audience's intelligence. And that's as rare and welcome as a well-crafted three-minute pop song.
Bandslam consistently exceeds current teen-flick standards thanks to its snarky humour, its strong musical sequences and its ability to convey the excitement the characters feel both about performing and forming new friendships.
In a goofily endearing performance reminiscent of the young John Cusack, Connell is charming and relatable. Likewise, Kudrow, as the overprotective mother who both fears and wants more independence for her son.
Instead of the vapid drivel you'd expect from their Disneyfied crowd, Bandslam turns out to be a charming (and well-soundtracked: Hello, Wilco!) little parable for the tween set about first crushes, friendship and like, duh, the power of music.
Yes, the plot is totally predictable. But the smart script consistently tweaks the formula, allowing director/cowriter Graff to pull off the near-impossible: making a movie that neither sells out nor talks down to teens.
Like a less oppressively hip Juno, Bandslam captures the way young people too smart and pop-culture-savvy for their own good let the music and movies they love define them during adolescence's crucible of humiliation and self-doubt.
Part of me wanted to shove "Bandslam" aside for being aside as a teen-exploitation piece of junk about a ragtag bunch of misfits ... but, interestingly enough, it's just as cynical as I am (if not more so).