Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Rock Of Ages (The SOB Review)

Rock Of Ages (The SOB Review) - Brooks Atkinson Theatre, New York, New York

*/12 (out of ****)

I'll say one thing for the musical Rock Of Ages. You have to give it credit for its massive cajones.

Despite some relatively decent performances from its hard-working cast who clearly don't stop believin', this completely lightweight, throwaway jukebox musical does its best trying to make you forget just how incredibly insipid it is by plying you with alcohol during the performance as if you're at a rock concert, as well as giving you clever tschotchkes like the little fake lighter you can wave during its über-amplified power ballads.

Oy. More like Schock of Ages ... cleft for me in a splitting headache when all was said and done. And no, it was not from a hangover. I should have had more to drink.

Mind you, I actually enjoyed many of the tunes on Rock Of Ages' headbanging playlist when they originally ruled FM radio over twenty years ago. But I felt more than a little cheated each time a song was truncated and layered over another heavy metal hit.

Constantine Maroulis headlines as Drew, just a city boy born and raised in south Detroit who's trying to make it big in eighties LA among a crowded field of metal heads, including Stacee Jaxx (James Carpinello). Drew meets Sherrie (Savannah Wise subbing for the wisely MIA Amy Spanger), a small town girl living in a lonely world, and she mistakes his midnight train of love for friendship going nowhere. Predictability predictably ensues, and -- spoiler alert -- Drew and Sherrie hold on to their feelings by getting together in the end.

While Chris D'Arienzo's book provided me with at least a couple of laughs from the gut, Kristin Hanggi's uninspired direction makes Rock Of Ages bad to the bone.

This is Steve On Broadway (SOB).

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At 27 May, 2009, Blogger Vance said...

I must say though, I did enjoy the toy lighter they gave us.

At 27 May, 2009, Blogger Esther said...

Darn, didn't get a lighter! ;-(

I dunno, this was one of those cases where everyone around me was laughing hysterically and I was maybe mildly amused a couple of times. It was crude and not very witty or clever and way too loud. And I sat through it stone-cold sober!

Oh yeah, I like some of the songs, too, and it did annoy me that they only played really short versions.


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