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The Chive


   The funniest, nastiest movie reviews anywhere.


The best thing about the jazz-centric, shameless Oscar bait that is Whiplash is the CollegeHumor Weird Al parody it spawned.  Check it out (the parody, that is).

Weird Al Gets Whiplashed

Where the spoof is hilarious, the movie is a rusty trombone.  It's a study in circle jerk, "serious" filmmaking that's as dour and sour as a spinster's pussy and half as enjoyable to look at.

For no reason director Damien Chazelle chooses to share with his audience, Andrew Neimann (Miles "Real Facial Scars" Teller) wants to become the Long Dong Silver of jazz drumming.  At the prestigious Shaffer Conservatory of Music, he catches the eye (the ear?) of the school's most gifted professor, Terrence Fletcher (J.K. "J. Jonah Jameson" Simmons), who agrees to let Andrew join his elite studio band.

Fletcher, it turns out, is more like a cult leader than a teacher.  He's a borderline psychopath in educator's clothing.  When he's not shouting profanities and insults R. Lee Ermey-style, Fletcher throws chairs at and smacks the shit out of young Andrew.  The kid takes it all like Matthew Modine's Joker in Full Metal Jacket and, unfortunately, never snaps like Vincent D'Onofrio's Private Pyle.  A scene set to The Surfaris' "Wipe Out" featuring Andrew stabbing Fletcher to death with his drumsticks in a blood-soaked rage while screaming "AM I ON YOUR TEMPO NOW, BITCH?!!" over and over really would have taken this self-reverential sheepshit up a notch.

Instead, the only blood we get drips from Andrew's hands onto his drum kit after long hours of practice.  And we get it multiple times because it's Artsy Imagery!

Whiplash is one of those flicks that's all capital letters and exclamation marks.  Fletcher is a Genius!  And an Asshole!  Andrew is Driven!  He has Big Dreams!  Jazz is Important!  Drama!  Yelling!  Passion!  Treble Clefs! 

Enough, you pretentious twats!

Where Whiplash really pooch-screws its rimshot is with its two main characters.  You're supposed to want to root for Andrew, but he turns out to be an egotistical, clueless little fucker you'd sooner smack than applaud.  One minute Fletcher is the Buddha-calm picture of musical virtuosity, and the next he's Tony Soprano after a bad night at the Bing.  His mood swings back and forth so often he might as well be called Professor Metronome.

I can name Whiplash's tune in one note:  the brown one.

March 1, 2015  Video release review rather than theatrical release review because nunya.

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