The Rocker parents guide

The Rocker Parent Guide

Overall C

The life of Robert "Fish" Fishman (Rainn Wilson) is like "the big one" that got away. During the 1980s, he was kicked out of his rock band just before the group attained superstar status. But after twenty years of being a little minnow, the drummer gets a second chance to cast his hook into the pond of stardom--thanks to his nephew's high school band.

Release date August 20, 2008

Violence B-
Sexual Content D+
Profanity D+
Substance Use C-

Why is The Rocker rated PG-13? The MPAA rated The Rocker PG-13 for drug and sexual references, nudity and language.

Run Time: 102 minutes

Official Movie Site

Parent Movie Review

Old rockers never die—but they can become pudgy, unkempt, and irritable. Such is the case for former drummer Robert “Fish” Fishman (Rainn Wilson) who was booted out of an 80s rock band called Vesuvius after a record company executive decided he didn’t fit the group’s future. The obsessive drummer’s violent retaliation, including the superhuman feat of attacking the band’s speeding van with his drumsticks, didn’t stop the group from going on to become one of the hottest acts on stage.

Twenty years later, Fish is a cubicle worker until the day a co-worker begins playing Vesuvius’s latest CD, sending the aging percussionist into yet another fit of rage. Now out of a job and money, he turns to his sister Lisa (Jane Lynch) for a place to live. There he reunites with his teenaged nephew Matt (Josh Gad) and discovers the boy’s garage band just happens to be in need of a drummer. Reluctantly the other band members, Amelia (Emma Stone) and Curtis (Teddy Geiger), agree to let the old guy play their one big gig.

While the evening could have gone better, it still has the power to awaken Fish’s legendary rock dreams. He is also sincerely impressed with Curtis’s original songs, which all dwell on the youth’s angst over his father’s abandonment of their family a few years earlier. Somehow Fish manages to convince the kids to keep him on a little longer, even though he got them all grounded by stealing Curtis’s mom’s van in order to transport them to another play date.

Due to their restricted circumstances, the group decides to meet over the Internet to rehearse. However, Fish doesn’t understand the concept of “video” conferencing and attends the practice in the buff (we see lots of him from the rear and sides). When the images the camera captures spreads across the worldwide web, the “Naked Drummer” suddenly becomes a hot commodity—and the gang is soon in the crosshairs of a record producer.

These nude depictions, along with some moderate profanities and crude sexual remarks, are unfortunate because the rest of the film does offer a surprisingly positive story and some good music (especially after Fish tells Curtis it’s time to give his songs a more upbeat mood). As well, the teen characters are portrayed as being somewhat responsible (although one was accused of bringing drugs to school and they initially lie to their parents so they can travel with Fish). Their behavior acts as a foil to Fish’s childishness, such as ripping up hotel rooms and drinking himself well beyond silly. Yet even the inclusion of consequences may not be enough to counterbalance the unnecessary content and convince parents not to toss this “fish” back in the sea.

Starring Rainn Wilson, Christina Applegate, Emma Stone, Teddy Geiger,. Running time: 102 minutes. Theatrical release August 20, 2008. Updated

The Rocker
Rating & Content Info

Why is The Rocker rated PG-13? The Rocker is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for drug and sexual references, nudity and language.

In this film about three teens and a forty-something who hit the road in a rock band, it’s the kids who are the positive role models. However, there are still many issues of concern, especially an extended scene of a completely naked adult male playing the drums (seen from the rear and side). Language includes scatological profanities, terms of Deity, crude anatomical terms as well as an acronym that signifies a sexual expletive and a raised middle finger. There are also some crude sexual comments. A principal character drinks to excess and other adults are seen drinking in bars. One scene shows three people driving, while one (not the driver) drinks from a bottle. A man fills his mouth with liquor, then spews it from his lips and lights the spray on fire. A man implies he has used hand sanitizer for the purposes of getting inebriated. A teen boy is grounded after he admits to bringing drugs to school. Teens lie to their parents so they can leave to go play in a band. An adult damages hotel rooms and is seen throwing a television out of a hotel window.

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The Rocker Parents' Guide

What are the benefits of learning to play a musical instrument? When you listen to music, which instruments do you notice? What instrument do you imagine being able to play?

Are drinking and partying a necessary aspect of being a “rock star” or an assumed byproduct of the job? Can you think of music celebrities that don’t fit this stereotype?

Home Video

The most recent home video release of The Rocker movie is January 27, 2009. Here are some details…

Drumming it’s way into the home video market, The Rocker releases as the Born To Rock Edition Two-Disc DVD and The Rocker Blu-ray Edition.

Both versions offer the following bonus materials:

-Two commentaries, one with director Peter Cattaneo and actor Rainn Wilson, and the other with actors Josh Gad, Teddy Geiger, Emma Stone and Jason Sudeikis.

- Ten deleted scenes.

- Gag reel.

- Featurettes (Rainn Wilson: Office Rocker, Pete Best Interview, Behind The Band: Vesuvius, Rock Beat With Fish Fishman, The Music of The Rocker and Rock Tales).

- MTV Film Festival Panel and Fox Movie Channel Presents: In Character With The Rocker.

- Music video I’m Not Bitter.

- Vesuvius Public Service Announcements

- Four podcasts.

-A digital copy movie file for portable media players.

The DVD version offers audio tracks in 5.1 Dolby Surround (English) and Dolby Surround (French), with subtitles in English and Spanish.

The Blu-ray edition is recorded on a 50GB dual-layer disc authored in BD-J with AVC (MPEG 4) compression with 5.1 DTS HD Lossless Master Audio (English) and 5.1 Dolby Digital tracks (English, French and Spanish), with subtitles in English and Spanish.

Related home video titles:

Another aspiring singer losses her place just before the group hits the big time in Dreamgirls. In The School of Rock, a desperate musician hijacks a classroom and prepares the students to compete in the Battle of the Bands.