|ROCK STAR (2001)|
|"Isn't the rock star fantasy thing something you're supposed to grow out of...like around 14?"|
|Time: 105 mins.|
Boredom makes strange bedfellows, causing one to watch films in the comfort of one’s home that you couldn’t have been dragged to see in the theater. Being a fan of classic rock-n-roll and knowing something about the Cinderella-like story upon which this film is based, I decided to give Walhberg the chance to rock my Friday night. He stars as the lead singer of a tribute band who gets plucked from obscurity when Steel Dragon, his idols, fire their lead singer. While onstage, singing his heart out, he’s a musical force to be reckoned with filled with passion and charisma. When he steps offstage the energy level drops below zero as we’re forced to watch him deal with the pitfalls of fame that are all too familiar. In this case, how he reconciles his super sexy performing personality with the sweet, caring boyfriend he once was to the lovely and amazing Ms. Aniston. Though she plays the usual sidekick role, she gives a smart, sweet and honest performance as the girl who realizes she wants more out of life than sex, drugs and rock-n-roll. She’s also not about to share her man with just any groupie that comes along, except during the occasionally drunken orgy. She represents the only normal person in this film and her presence is sorely missed when she takes the high road to maturity.
The fact that this truly happened to somebody makes this film inherently compelling. Unfortunately, they don’t really do anything to enhance the uniqueness of the tale, falling back on the requisite music tour foibles for drama. The chemistry between Wahlberg and Aniston keeps the offstage guff interesting. When she leaves, the film sinks like a stone due to Wahlberg’s listless performance. His former past as a music superstar gives him the confidence to truly kick-ass in the concert scenes in ways most other actors would probably fail to capture. However, his failure to achieve the same results while offstage is what ultimately kills the buzz. Those still in love with the music of the 80s will probably enjoy this tale, as its’ hard-rocking story and soundtrack will give you the itch to reach for your lighter. For those glad that the 80s are long over, you’ll find nothing entertaining about the life lessons learned after a tour of duty in the world of glam rock excess. Wahlberg should start taking classes pronto if he wants his acting career to last longer than his recording one. Good looks and a hard body will only entertain for so long.