Rock of Ages Parent Guide
The tunes in this film may leave adults pining for their teen years. However, very few parents may be ready to let "Rock of Ages" rock their children's world.
Parent Movie Review
While there is something nostalgic about the music from one’s youth, think again if you plan to introduce your children to the rock anthems of the ‘80s by taking them to Rock of Ages. No peppy, sanitized version here of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’”, as seen on Glee. The raunchy behavior in this film is what made your parents cringe then and may leave you wincing today. After all, who aspires to have his or her daughter grow up to be a pole-dancing stripper?
Yet, like a thousand girls before her, starry-eyed Sherrie Christian (Julianne Hough) from Tulsa, Oklahoma has big plans when she steps off the bus in downtown Los Angles. Instead she falls in love with barman Drew Boley (Diego Boneta) while waiting tables in The Bourbon Room on the famous Sunset Strip.
Strapped with debt, The Bourbon’s owner, Dennis Dupree (Alec Baldwin) and his hairy assistant Lonny (Russell Brand) are making a last ditch effort to save the seamy establishment by staging a farewell performance for rock-n-roller Stacee Jaxx (Tom Cruise). Wearing an elaborate codpiece with a black pair of chaps that leaves his backside exposed, Stacee is about to be unceremoniously dumped by his band Arsenal. His oily business manager, Paul Gill (Paul Giamatti), however, chooses to spin it as Stacee’s start of a solo career.
The real problem is the singer’s erratic behaviors and his questionable on-stage performances. (There seems to be nothing problematic about his off-stage performance ability.) What the rocker really needs is something sweet and innocent to revive his musical prowess deadened by too much liquor and sex. And Rolling Stones’ reporter Constance Sack (Malin Akerman) will do—though don’t expect any innocence from this perky blonde correspondent who can strip down to her skivvies as quickly as any exotic dancer.
Meanwhile Patricia Whitmore (Catherine Zeta-Jones), the wife of L.A.‘s newly elected mayor, Mike Whitmore (Bryan Cranston), heads up a venomous campaign to stop Jaxx’s appearance and clean up the strip. While she rallies a group of church-going women in the chapel, her husband exposes his whitey tighties in a priest’s office where his secretary uses Rosary Beads as handcuffs during their kinky sexual encounter. The sacrilegious depiction is vulgar regardless of one’s religious beliefs.
Vocal executions from legendary singers like Mary J. Blige (who plays the owner of a gentlemen’s club where strippers ply their wares with plenty of erotic dance moves) share the stage with first time musical outings by actors Alec Baldwin, Malin Akerman, Paul Giamatti and headliner Tom Cruise. While the reviews of their singing abilities are mixed, there is nothing ambivalent about this film’s content. Rock-n-Roll never pretended to take a moral stand, but this jukebox musical reveals enough skin to warrant a high exposure warning. Fueled by the suggestion of frequent sexual encounters and one particularly rough and tumble scene in a men’s restroom, this movie also includes heavy drinking and some strong profanities.
Hearkening back to an era when the outrageous consumption of hairspray likely put a dent in the ozone layer, the tunes in this film may leave adults pining for their teen years. However, very few parents may be ready to let Rock of Ages rock their children’s world.Directed by Adam Shankman. Starring Julianne Hough, Diego Boneta, Tom Cruise, Alec Baldwin. Running time: 123 minutes. Theatrical release June 15, 2012. Updated July 8, 2016
Rock of Ages
Rating & Content Info
Why is Rock of Ages rated PG-13? Rock of Ages is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for sexual content, suggestive dancing, some heavy drinking, and language.
Violence: A baboon fires a gun. A woman throws a drink in a man’s face. An animal trashes a man’s office. A man is punched.
Sexual Content: Prostitutes walk the street. Strippers, in tiny costumes, pole dance. A depiction of a woman with open legs is seen atop a building. Characters make crude comments about male and female anatomy. A man places his hand on women’s breasts. Characters kiss (including with tongues) on several occasions. Women lick a man. He is seen in bed with several women. A political figure and his secretary engage in sexual play in a church using Rosary Beads. Characters are seen in their underwear, bikinis and other revealing clothing. A man discusses a sexual act with his employee. A man wears an elaborate codpiece and chaps that reveal his buttocks. Characters undress and engage in sexual romping. Characters repeatedly grope one another. Thrusting and other suggestive dance moves are frequently portrayed. Homosexual characters confess their love and kiss. A woman gets a condom cover stuck in her hair. Other crude depictions and bodily functions are included.
Language: The script includes a strong sexual expletive, a crude hand gesture, scatological slang, crude sexual language and terms of Deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Heavy drinking is frequently portrayed in a bar setting. A brief drug depiction is shown. A man smokes a cigar.
Other: A character pees on a man’s shoe.
Page last updated July 8, 2016
Rock of Ages Parents' Guide
Why can it be difficult for a performer to avoid the pitfalls of fame? How can popularity affect an artist’s edge? What compromises does Drew make for the sake of being on stage? How realistic is Sherrie’s dream of making it big in Los Angeles?
What is the cultural significance of Rock-n-Roll? How has this musical genre influenced performers through the decades? Who do you think is the most influential performer or band? How does this film further the conventions of rock-n-roll?
The most recent home video release of Rock of Ages movie is October 9, 2012. Here are some details…
Home Video Notes: Rock of Ages
Release Date: 9 October 2012
Rock of Ages releases to home video (Blu-ray/DVD/Digital Copy) with the following extras:
- Rock of Ages: Legends of the Sunset Strip
- The Stories We Sing
- 7 Defining a Decade Featurettes
- Selected Song Access