Rock of Ages | Chicago Reader

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Rated PG-13 · 123 minutes · 2012

Adapted from the Broadway show, this jukebox musical is studded with more than two dozen hair-metal hits by Journey, Foreigner, Poison, Def Leppard, Guns N’ Roses, etc. I grew up with this music, but not because I wanted to, and now that it's being repackaged as nostalgia I can only shake my head in dismay. The story is willfully, proudly cliched, a Busby Berkeley backstage romance transplanted to a legendary rock club on the Sunset Strip in 1987. Julianne Hough and Diego Boneta barely register as the waitress and bar back acting out the boy-meets-girl plot, but there are fun performances by Alec Baldwin as the club's beleaguered owner, Catherine Zeta-Jones as a Tipper Gore type who wants to shut him down, Paul Giamatti as a slimy manager, and especially Tom Cruise, in iconic self-parody mode, as the dissolute rock god Stacee Jaxx. The thing runs more than two hours, but this is the sort of project that's indemnified against charges of excess. Adam Shankman directed.
Official Site:
Director: Adam Shankman
Producer: Matthew Weaver, Scott Prisand, Carl Levin, Tobey Maguire, Garrett Grant, Jennifer Gibgot, Toby Emmerich, Richard Brener, Michael Disco, Samuel Brown, Hillary Weaver, Janet Rich, Adam Shankman and Chris D'Arienzo
Cast: Julianne Hough, Diego Boneta, Russell Brand, Paul Giamatti, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Malin Akerman, Mary J. Blige, Bryan Cranston, Alec Baldwin, Tom Cruise, Will Forte, Erica Frene and Angelo Valderrama

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