Craig's Movie Reviews

I love movies. I love writing about them. Hope you like reading what I write.


Before I get started with this review, proper, two things.

For one, I apologise for the tardiness of this review. The film’s barely in cinemas anymore and it’s already received its Oscars.

Secondly, since this is a musically themed movie, I thought I’d take time to promote a couple musical friends of mine.

The first is singer/songwriter Aidan Smith. I could go on about how talented he is, but the best thing to do is show you his stuff here.

The other one is Rosie Lavery, Youth Ambassador for Classical Music in Glasgow. She has a blog of equal greatness to this one here, on various aspects of classical music.

With that, on with the review.

Whiplash follows the story of a Jazz drumming music student and an overbearing teacher and the conflict which ensues between them.

There is a lot more swearing at this moment in the film than there is in this photograph.

There is a lot more swearing at this moment in the film than there is in this photograph.

J.K Simmons won an Oscar last week for his performance as the teacher here. I say he absolutely deserved it, bringing forth a mix between of Gunnery Sergeant Hartmann from Full Metal Jacket and Daniel Plainview from There Will Be Blood.

However, I think the show is stolen from him by Miles Teller who portrays the student. Teller apparently was not a drummer before this wonderfully written script landed on his lap. But, watch this film and you’ll think he’s been playing since he was an embryo.

Not only that, the intense relationship between these two characters and its effects can be read on their faces in stark detail. Even when they don’t speak, you can tell without miming what they are thinking about one another.

This tale is about pure passion for art and the lack of acceptance for anything but perfection in that art. I for one sympathize with the internal debates discussed here. While I lack the obsessive drive of Teller’s character, I often see my future as naught but the pursuit of a career in film.

This and another favourite of mine for this year, Birdman, have some things in common. They both have drum heavy soundtracks and have a close connection to me due to their explorations into artistic issues. These connections to me and my approval of the film, may go to show once and for all that film enjoyment is subjective and therefore, as is explained in Birdman, critics are pointless.

I heard a woman complain to her partner about the ending to this movie. And while I do understand that endings of this kind are not to everyone’s taste, I ask all who feel this way about this ending what sort of ending they would have preferred. I personally found it a perfect send off in a relatively jazzy style.

I’d say catch Whiplash while you can in cinemas or you’ll be tapping your foot impatiently for the DVD/Blu-Ray release, as I am doing for Birdman.

Recommended Scenario: If you love to be told fables of the dangers of pleasures of ambition.

If what I have written tells you that you would like this film, you can book tickets to see it at your local Cineworld here.                                                                                       Cineworld

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