Rarely gets on a roll. US, 122 min
As a hit stage musical, Rock of Ages had audiences in a state of fist-pumping, air-guitaring nirvana from the get-go. As a major motion picture, Rock of Ages won’t have many onlookers holding a cigarette lighter aloft in tribute. A garish glitter bomb packed tight with equal amounts of brashness and blandness, ROA is DOA once the novelty of its stunt casting of Tom Cruise as a louche rock god wears off. The screenplay hews closely to the stage version, serving up a drab little love story between a pair of small-timers (Julianne Hough, Diego Boneta) impatiently waiting for their shot at the big time. Classic ’80s numbers warbled primarily for laughs (such as an Alec Baldwin and Russell Brand duet on REO Speedwagon’s I Can’t Fight This Feeling) fare the best. Otherwise, at a running time of two hours, Rock of Ages takes an eternity to churn through its long list of singalongs for dingalings. Subtract Cruise (weird, but often great) from the mix, and all that remains is Mamma Mia! with a sock stuffed down its crotch. Co-stars Catherine Zeta-Jones.