There’s only a handful of great live-action family films that kids and adults will enjoy, but this joins the rare club and it does it with a guitar in its hands and rock in its hearts. Directed by the talented Richard Linklater, who later in his career brought out the highly acclaimed ‘Boyhood’, stars Jack Black and a school of young rockers, while celebrating its 13th anniversary.
Meet Dewey Finn (Jack Black). A guy who has a passion for music and is down on his luck lately, been thrown out of his band by being an embarrassment and needs to pay the rent for his close friend, Ned Schneebly (Mike White), who is a substitute teacher and is trying to become a certified teacher. However, when the principal of a school rings, Dewey poses as Ned “Schnayblay” to earn cash for the rent. Although, in the process, finds out that these kids are musically gifted.
This was one of my favourite films growing up, and it is one of those films that has actually gotten better since first viewing it as a kid. I’ve been watching a lot of films that I saw when I was a kid, however most aren’t as great when I was a kid, such as ‘Space Jam’ and ‘Race to Witch Mountain’. However, ‘School of Rock’ joins other family films that have gotten better since watching it as an adult like ‘Bridge to Terabithia’ and ‘Matilda’.
The film is very adult in its humour, however as seeing this film as a kid, with the exceptions of some profanity of the constant word of “ass”, most of the adult humour will go over kids’ heads, however it is a film that can help kids out in their lives by featuring great messages such as bullying and appearances. Plus, it does help that this film rocks with an amazing soundtrack of past songs like “It’s a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘n’ Roll)” and original ones like the self-titled “School of Rock”.
The acting performances are solid, with no bad performances at all in this film. Jack Black is terrifyingly amazing, five gold stars for Mr. Black. Jack Black’s character of Dewey Finn is a likeable character, thanks to his passion and trying to live his dream of being a rock star, however teaches these kids that anything is possible if you put your mind to it and opening them to rock music, that their parents are protecting them by labeling rock music as utter garbage, limiting their creativity and hiding their true talents of rock ‘n’ roll. Joan Cusack is also great as the principal of Horace Green Prep school by offering a woman who strives for perfection and following the strict school guidelines, even though she isn’t as fun as she once was, however she does an amazing job acting alongside Jack Black and does a great job at delivering the film’s lines.
‘School of Rock’ you get an A+ and fifty gold stars as a rocking family motion picture that all ages can enjoy.