Graham Reid | | <1 min read
When Elsewhere reviewed this white-knuckle film about 18 months ago we noted that jazz bores wouldn't like it because . . .
Because they are jazz bores who dislike anything they consider lacks authenticity in the genre.
Okay, it's unlikely that tutors in jazz academies are as emotionally brutalising as the antagonist here, but that takes nothing away from what is at the core of this film: Youthful ambition and obsession running headlong into psychological and physical torture from a music tutor.
As the young man tries to become an accomplished jazz drummer he is thwarted at every turn -- optimism negated by failure, sweat and blood never enough -- and because of his chosen instrument there is a aggressive tension whenever he plays.
We maintain Whiplash is less a film about jazz than it is about aspiration, but either way it is compelling . . . and JK Simmons as the tutor is a seriously disturbing screen presence.
Check it out, because it is cheap on DVD right now at JB HiFi stores (here) as part of a three-for-$20 deal (maybe pick up Fury, Skyfall, Whale Rider, White House Down or one of the others to pad out your purchase).
But do see Whiplash, it is impossible to look away.