The greatest achievement of the film version of “Rock of Ages” is that it truly celebrates the music of the 80’s.  I found myself thinking, wow, I can’t believe I forgot about that song, but I must admit I expected more from the storyline–it fell as flat as a pancake.

The greatest disappointment centered around Bourbon Room owner, played by Alec Baldwin, and his trusty sidekick, played by Russell Brand.  As a club in trouble and unable to pay back taxes, the storyline was tired and overworked.  Then, (spoiler), Brand declares his love for his boss.  I may myself be gay, but I really don’t think much was added to the drama by introducing a gay relationship for laughs.

Tom Cruise, on the other hand, is quite convincing in his role of aging, drugging rocker Stacee Jaxx.  Cruise talked about his role on the Jay Leno show, and discussed how he prepared for the role by taking intense voice lessons.  Obviously, whoever taught him knew the ins-and-outs of the music business.  It’s quite possible Tom Cruise is the hardest working actor in Hollywood, and he has sustained a career into his late 40’s.  He turns 50 on July 3rd, but nothing stops him or even slows him down.  He did make one rather strange comment on the Leno show.  He said his wife and daughter especially love musicals so they convinced him to make a musical.  To me, “Rock of Ages” is more of a rock opera, and I wouldn’t let me young daughter see the film for many years.  There are quite a few racy, overtly sexual scenes.

Speaking of sexuality, the relationship between the two young, somewhat star-crossed lovers, played by Diego Boneta and Julianne Hough, plods along  This plot point. has ben overdone so that it’s a cliche that they would break about over a misunderstanding, then find a way back into each other’s arms.  Did we really need to see their romance played out right behind the Hollywood sign?  Tres cliche.  Plus, Hough has a really pretty voice, but there’s not enough drive, passion, and husky grit to carry the 80’s music.

For a midnight show, it was a great way to spend the beginning of the weekend, and I have to admist I have already ordered both the movie and musical versions of “Rock of Ages” to compare them.  It should be great music to workout to.