Going into this film, I was pretty excited. I wanted to see Whiplash the moment I saw the trailer, but for some reason, I missed it in theaters. When I saw J.K. Simmons win the Oscar for this movie, I HAD to see the film as soon as I could. Thanks to an awesome Black Friday deal, I now own the film and finally got to see. So here we go!
Whiplash tells the story of a college student who seeks fame and success as a drummer. He joins a class of elite musicians that is taught by a well-respected professor. However, the professor’s teaching methods are a bit…extreme, and the journey to success is a little more overwhelming than the student imagined.
Miles Teller does a great job portraying a character addicted to success. To him, being a household name is the ultimate goal in life, and he is willing to go the distance to achieve that goal. It’s surprising to see how much he is willing to go through. There are some excellent, subtle scenes that really give you an idea of how addicted this guy is. It’s unnerving at times, because you want to root for him, but sometimes he’s just a jerk. The moments where he snaps are some great scenes that allow Miles Teller to show his true acting skills. This guy has a great future ahead of him.
J.K. Simmons DESERVES this Oscar. He owns the screen with every scene he is in. Simmons does a perfect job playing a professor that will stop at nothing to make their students shine. His teaching methods are some of the most brutal methods I have every seen in a music room. The best way to describe this guy is to compare him to a shark. He walks into class as a calming threat, who doesn’t lash-out, but is just observing, like a shark swimming in circles around its prey. Suddenly, with no warning, this guy snaps into an out-right monster, striking his helpless victim with no remorse. J.K. Simmons is almost just as scary in this movie as a shark is in real life…and I hate sharks. His comments and language in this film are so vicious, I actually laughed a few times because of how absurd this guy is!
The battle between these two is so relentless. The story has as many victories as it does failures, but the whole time I wasn’t sure if Miles Teller was going to make it. And even if he did make it, at what cost? That is truly why I love this movie. The film asks questions, but let’s you answer them. Everyone watching this film can have a different answer than the person sitting next to them, and in the end, everyone is right in their own way. The movie has a very abrupt ending, that doesn’t really give you any resolution. It let’s you decide the ending, and answer the questions the movie asks. The sudden ending of the movie brings up more conversation than one that fills in all the gaps. I saw this movie over a week ago, and the ending is still on my mind.
Overall, this film is incredible. The drumming sequences are filled with so much tension, that it actually gave me anxiety throughout the film. At times the odds are stacked so high against Miles Teller, that I had to remind myself it was only a film and I needed to calm down a bit. It’s a small story that is told wonderfully and has some powerful performances from both Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons. Even if you aren’t into music at all, I think you will still find enjoyment in this movie. I am going to give Whiplash a FANTASTIC out of 10.
What do you think of Whiplash? Let me know down below!
Thanks for reading!
**My next review will be on Passengers**