TAGS Bandslam
CATEGORIES Reviews
BandslamHelmed by 'Camp' writer/director Todd Graff, this musically-inclined coming-of-age tale follows Will (Gaelan Connell), an awkward, David-Bowie-loving teenager who uses classic rock to cope with his version of hell (read: high school).

When his mother (Lisa Kudrow, reminding us how funny she is) is relocated to New Jersey, Will befriends a beauitufl ex-cheerleader (a charming Aly Michalka) and her quirky bandmates, helps them compete for a slot at Bandslam (a battle of the bands ... on steroids) and, along the way, falls for a perpetually cynical loner named Sa5m (the 5 is silent), played against type by 'HSM' alum Vanessa Hudgens. BandslamHelmed by 'Camp' writer/director Todd Graff, this musically-inclined coming-of-age tale follows Will (Gaelan Connell), an awkward, David-Bowie-loving teenager who uses classic rock to cope with his version of hell (read: high school).

When his mother (Lisa Kudrow, reminding us how funny she is) is relocated to New Jersey, Will befriends a beauitufl ex-cheerleader (a charming Aly Michalka) and her quirky bandmates, helps them compete for a slot at Bandslam (a battle of the bands ... on steroids) and, along the way, falls for a perpetually cynical loner named Sa5m (the 5 is silent), played against type by 'HSM' alum Vanessa Hudgens.

Some Graff requisites -- for instance, an impromptu rock concert in the cafeteria -- and a scattering of sappy bits will garner some icks and blechs. But thanks to an ingeniously crafted script (which Graff co-penned), the film largely steers clear of 'Camp''s Fosse-ness while sharing its relevance, endears the audience to its rabble bunch of high school misfits and casts a light on impressive newcomer Connell. So all in all, 'Bandslam' is a rockin' good time.



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