Metascore
67

Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 27
  2. Negative: 1 out of 27
  1. It's a big enough film to hold all the contradictions. Green has an ego and a gift for stealing the spotlight with a wink and a grin. Yet his respect for the kids is genuine.
  2. Hilarious, inspired, frenzied.
  3. Reviewed by: Duane Byrge
    80
    Rock School rips out in the gritty-underdogs-conquer-the-world story progression. In this real-life scenario, Green whips them into shape for a triumphant performance at a Zappa Festival in East Germany.
  4. Through hilarious and charming interviews with the kids, extended chat sessions with Green, a few words from parents, and a healthy dose of performance footage, we get a sense of what sort of community Green has created, for better and worse.
  5. Reviewed by: Robert Koehler
    80
    Irresistibly entertaining and full of unique character portraits.
  6. 80
    Engrossing and frequently hilarious.
  7. 75
    You cheered Jack Black in "School of Rock," now give it up for Paul Green in the real thing.
  8. 75
    Green's approach certainly opens up opportunities for his students, and is a refreshing change from the lockstep public school approach, which punishes individualism.
  9. Rock School celebrates music, family, hard work and, yes, Paul Green. Best of all, it shows the flexibility of children to learn and adapt -- even when their teacher is nuts.
  10. 75
    A rousing, garage-band-style documentary.
  11. Occasionally thoughtful and very entertaining.
  12. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    75
    Those who appreciated "Metallica: Some Kind of Monster" will probably enjoy this documentary.
  13. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    75
    As a portrait of dysfunctional pedagogy, it's both refreshing and more than a little terrifying.
  14. I'd be lying if I didn't admit that Rock School, Don Argott's amusing and spirited documentary, would seem a heck of a lot niftier if its fire hadn't already been stolen by "School of Rock."
  15. 75
    Even with Paul Green's invective echoing in the back of your mind, nothing's quite so heartwarming as the sight of a young person blossoming.
  16. Reviewed by: Jeremy Mathews
    70
    With a combination of talent and a child’s excitement and outrage for music, Green has a personality to rival Jack Black’s fictional rocker-turned-teacher from "School of Rock."
  17. 70
    The kids are great, but when they graduate from Rock School, will the valedictorian be the next Jimmy Page, or the technically proficient lead guitarist of a Led Zeppelin cover band?
  18. Alternately hilarious and alarming documentary.
  19. The scenes of Green lavishing affection on his charges under the closing credits go a long way to rounding out this entertaining portrait of a volatile but effective educator.
  20. Since there's no evidence in the film that Green teaches his students how to compose, improvise or experiment with the music, presumably the next wave will come from somewhere else.
  21. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    60
    And while Ivy League-educated psychologist Green considers himself a natural teacher, his teaching technique involves pitting students against each other and haranguing them with rants that run from gentle, good-natured ribbing to flat-out verbal abuse, delivered at an ego-crushing volume.
  22. 50
    You root for the kids, who are utterly captivating, but Green is another story. His shtick -- a combo of insufferable stage-parent and unbearable rock geek -- is exhausting.
  23. 50
    Don Argott's lively documentary, ostensibly a paean to alternative pedagogy, extends its subject a long leash, and he in turn does his damnedest to sabotage the project. Rock School ends up being a movie about just how little fun rock 'n' roll can be.
  24. Paul Green seems more interested in what rock school can do for him than for the kids.
  25. 30
    Until the last 20 minutes or so of Rock School, the actual playing, while often startlingly good, is kind of boring.

There are no user reviews yet.