A review of ďRock SchoolĒ by Jeanne Aufmuth

 

Stars: **

Rating: R for graphic language

Run Time: 1 hour, 33 minutes

 

Reluctant snaps to first-time filmmaker Don Argott for opening up a world heretofore unknown, an incomparable institution known as the Paul Green School of Rock Music.

Rock School follows a haphazard year of music classes at the controversial Philadelphia establishment, allowing for a shallow character study and a slim grasp of the fantasies of child musicians who want to rock in the grand tradition of Frank Zappa, Black Sabbath and their diehard brethren.

School of Rock Music is a self-proclaimed breeding ground for misfits; for kids who donít fit the mold and donít want to.One hundred and twenty youngsters ages 9-17 for whom rock-and-roll offers single-minded purpose and euphonic escape. Love and joy and work ethic for the young non-conformist.

Itís not Argottís fault that I canít stomach Green himself, a whirling dervish of an egoist who has fostered the rock-and-roll dream and lived to tell the tale. Greenís relationship with his struggling students is anything but healthy, born of a desire to expose himself as the ultimate Guitar God and Man with the Plan.

Though Green is exceedingly generous with his time and his skills the mother in me cannot abide the verbal abuse he rains down on his students.His energy is boundless and his enthusiasm infectious but I dislike the tyrannical tirades and profanity-laced psychology he uses to ďinspireĒ his prodigal talent.

Argottís lack of experience is evident in his sketchy camerawork and splotchy editing.Fortunately he has an intriguing/disturbing subject on his hands, a saving grace considering the primary obstacle.