Whiplash Ė The beat of the movie will keep you hook till the end

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Miles Teller, who plays Andrew the young jazz drummer, is a self-taught drummer but more rock and roll style and didnít hold his sticks like a jazz drummer. To help him learn to fake play like a jazz pro, the director cast a real musician, Nate Lang to play Tellerís rival, Carl. Lang is a member of the New York band the Howliní Souls.

Should I see it?

Whiplash is a movie I recommend to everyone, except children, especially if you are a music lover!

War of the Movies: 9.5/10
IMDb: 8.7/10 from 56 635 users
Metascore: 88/100
RottenTomatoes: 95%

Directed by Damien Chazelle
Released on November 14, 2014
Running Time: 107 minutes
Starring: Miles Teller, J.K. Simmons, Melissa Benoist

A promising young man who plays drum gets an invitation by the conductor of a prestigious conservatory band to come and play for him.

Andrew, 19 years old, is a promising young jazz drummer that enrolls at Shaffer Conservatory, a prestigious school in New York. One day, the conductor of the band hears him play and invites him to join the bandís practice. Andrew will realize really quickly that it wonít be easy not only to achieve is goal to be the best drummer in history, but also to please conductor Fletcher, who as a way of teaching that is, to say the least, very unconventional. Fletcher has a particular way to help his students to be the best, and his students and their family may not agree that this method is the best way to achieve their dreams.

The story itself is incredible, many movies has been done about music and young people who wants to reach their dreams, but none of them comes close to Whiplash. The movie is pretty simple with no backstory, a young man who dreams to be the best drum player to ever live, absolutely nothing new here, but what makes Whiplash differs from the other movies of the same type is the actors, the script and the directing of the story. It has an intensity that lacks in many movies, something that will make you feel every emotions going through the screen. You donít see much of the characters lives outside of the school and the bandís practice, and thatís fine. The movie is all about music and battles between two persons, between themselves, Andrew and Fletcher, because the student does not agree with Fletcherís way of teaching, and a battle within themselves, how they live their lives with the choices they make. Thatís all the movie is about, and itís so well directed and straight to the point that even if itís a simple story, itís one of the best Iíve ever seen. You will remember this movie and conductor Fletcher long after youíve seen it!

J.K. Simmons, as Fletcher, is magnificent. No wonder he won Best Supporting Actor at the Golden Globes, Screen Actor Guild Awards, Critics Choice Awards, and I predict he will also win an Oscar on February 22. As a conductor he has good intentions, in his own way, but still you just so want to put him in his place for what he does to his students. And when an actor makes you think a specific way about their characters on the way they act, it means he outdid himself to give us his greatest performance to this day. Miles Teller, as young Andrew, is a real discovery. Itís not his first movie, but his role is completely different from what we are used to see of him, and after watching him in Whiplash, I canít wait to see him again in a movie and a role as intense, he shown us that he has potential to go far in the industry of acting. And since Miles Teller isnít really playing in the movie, it takes a great actor to be able to fake play drum and make us believe itís really him playing, no special effects can help you achieve that.

I try to find a disappointing fact about the movie, and honestly itís hard to think of one! The acting was great, from everybody; the storyline was excellent, I was captivated from the beginning until the end, the pace of the movie was just right, not the same opinion of Fletcher about Andrew tempo in the movie! Itís supposed to be a jazz movie, but the sounds isnít really jazz and I would have love to have about five to ten minutes more of the movie to show us a little more about Andrewís life for the future, but thatís it. Considering that the movie was shot in only 19 days, I think itís more than easy to overcome these two mistakes. The movie is a nominee for Best Picture at the Academy Awards and itís no wonder why.

Whiplash is absolutely incredible and will make you have so many feelings, from being totally outrage one minute to have a smile on your face at what Andrew can accomplish the next, itís a movie you really donít want to miss.

Personal Commentary

I loved this movie, one of the best I ever saw. Because the story and acting is really good I recommend this to everyone, but for the music lovers, especially the ones who loves a great drum beat, this movie is for you!

More intense than any action movie Iíve seen all year.

Whiplash is the story of a jazz drummer named Andrew Nieman (Miles Teller) and his journey to try and become ďone of the greatsĒ. He goes to school at the Shaffer Conservatory of Music. He has high hopes of being in the school studio band of Terrence Fletcher (J.K. Simmons), where they play jazz at competitions. One day, Fletcher asks Andrew to play drums in his studio band, and at first this seems great. Things begin to look up for Andrew, that is until his first day practicing with Fletcher, where he learns that things are much harder than he expected. Fletcher does not coddle his students, he pushes them to the very edge. This puts a lot of stress on Andrew, and he has to constantly keep
up with Fletcherís nearly impossible demands.

Whiplash is one of the most intense and thrilling films Iíve seen in a long time. I was on the edge of my seat for basically the whole movie, and never wanted to take my eyes off of the screen. I found myself cringing and tensing up when Andrew would hit a wrong note or play at the wrong tempo. As someone who plays the drums, this film was especially intense and nerve-wracking. I could tell when Andrew was off tempo before Fletcher made the whole band stop, and it made the film that much more realistic, and intense. I knew in advance when Fletcher was going to go off, and it had me looking away and cringing. One of the things that the film does really well is capture that feeling you get in the classroom when you know someone is going to get yelled at. You get that instant feeling of dread and that feeling where you want to duck beneath your seat so you donít get yelled at too. They made it so that it seemed as if J.K. Simmons was yelling at YOU the audience member. It made Andrewís pressure and stress that much more personal and relatable. Every time that Andrew starts drumming in front of Fletcher, I tensed up, hoping that he would hit every note perfectly, hoping that he wouldnít do anything wrong, so that he could avoid Fletcherís wrath, and not be the one in the wrong. I had such a strong desire for Andrew not to mess up, that I began to think that I was Andrew. I began to feel that if Andrew messed up, I had messed up, and began to feel the dread of Fletcher walking over and yelling in my face. I felt myself going with the music and feeling it, as if I was the one playing it, hoping that I wouldnít make a mistake. It really is amazing how well they created a fear of mistakes in this film. Ok, I think Iíve rambled about the story enough, itís time to
move on to acting.

Miles Teller is absolutely fantastic in this film. His performance is completely believable, and when you see him being angry or frustrated, it seems totally real. He seemed like he truly wanted to become a great drummer. He truly seems angry at himself for not being able to play certain things on the drums. He deserves much more attention for his performance in this because it is amazing. His lack of acting nominations is disgraceful and appalling. He holds his own against the great performance of J.K. Simmons and proves himself to be a great young actor. Letís just hope heís not wasted on superhero movies and romantic comedies.

J.K. Simmons is incredible in this movie. His presence is commanding, and you canít take your eyes off of him when heís on screen. I donít even know how to describe it, but itís astounding. The Oscar buzz is well earned, and I would not be disappointed if he won an Oscar for this film. I truly cannot describe this performance, youíll have to see it yourself.

The cinematography was actually very good in this film. The lighting varies in color, but always maintains the right mood and atmosphere of the scenes on display. I was very pleasantly surprised with the camerawork and think that itís a great plus to the movie.
I usually donít talk about this in my reviews but it has a big role in Whiplash. The editing in Whiplash is so fitting for the film, that I donít think the movie would be so intense and thrilling without it. Closeup shots of instruments are quickly edited in together with sweeping shots of the entire band and Andrew playing the drums. It really helps to create that frantic feeling and constant dread that something might go wrong. Thereís lots of fast editing and it really helps maintain the fast pace of the movie. Itís definitely a huge plus for Whiplash.

Of course, the music in Whiplash is great. The jazz songs are great, and even the score itself was great. The score is used very little in this movie, but it is nonetheless used well. It is mostly used during Andrewís most personal moments of practicing the drums. This is great for creating a feeling of increasing pressure and stress.

I have tried and tried, but I cannot think of anything I didnít like about Whiplash. I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it, and the more I think about it, the more I want to see it again. The characters are interesting and compelling, the dialogue is witty and quick, the cinematography and editing are fantastic and really help with the pace, and of course the acting is amazing. If you want 2 hours to go by in the blink of an eye, go see Whiplash. Itís intense, exciting, entertaining, and fantastic. I truly enjoyed Whiplash and would highly recommend it.

Through the darkness of future past
The magician longs to see
One chants out between two worlds:
Fire walk with me.


Whiplash is about the blood sweat toil and tears that go into the making of a creative genius---a great drummer of jazz music . And the movie shows the blood literally flowing in several scenes of the movie ; ditto for the sweat---the hero practices drumming till he is drenched in sweat...and the tears are an integral part of the film , for the hero breaks down like we all do when we try hard yet fail...

19 year old Andrew Nieman ( played by Miles Teller ) is different from others of his age ; while his peers boast about their academic success as evidenced by their school grades , he talks about his achievements in the art of playing drums....While others have more stable family backgrounds , his mother has abandoned him and his father in childhood---maybe that's what makes him different....
His passion for his art is such that he tells his girlfriend to break off with him because she is a distraction which will work to break his concentration and prevent him from reaching the top....

Nieman's father supports him all the way , and he gets enrolled in the Shaffer conservatory of music . And his skills get noticed by the head of the school band Terrence Fletcher ( played by J.K. Simmons ) . But Fletcher has unconventional ways of getting the best out of his students , and surviving his methods is as difficult as reaching the pinnacle of creativity....

.....For Fletcher has perfected the art of abusing and screaming and even throwing an object or two at his pupils to make them try harder . The moment he enters the room , electric tension grips the air....the students are dead silent with their eyes looking firmly downwards ; eye contact with the indomitable Fletcher is out of question .

It is difficult to decide who has acted better---the teacher or the pupil . Miles Teller really plays the drums like a fantastic drum player would do , especially towards the end....he is not just an actor chosen for his good looks , but capable of really playing the drums like a professional....
J K Simmons has formidable screen presence , and that is accentuated by the camera focusing on his face repeatedly . When he doesn't like something any of his pupils is doing ( which is quite often ) , his voice cracks like whip to lash the offending student till he is left in tears ; the movie really lives upto it's name....

So can Nieman reach the pinnacle of creative genius and become a renowned drummer ?? Can he survive in the tough competitive world where other drummers are kept ready by Fletcher to pounce upon his place in the band the moment he makes a mistake ?? Does he have the temperament to withstand the force of the personality of Fletcher ; a personality that other pupils have failed to cope up with , causing life shaking consequences ??
Watch the movie for the answers....

The movie does not follow the predictable path of the student gradually impressing the teacher , but rather has surprises in store for us as it moves forward with twists and turns that make it unpredictable . And I sat in rapt attention watching every scene unfold....
Music is good , as it should be for a movie whose storyline is based on music .

Verdict---Formidable .

matt72582's Avatar
Please Quote/Tag Or I'll Miss Your Responses
I wish there were more dialogue scenes, like after Fletcher was done playing... To get an understanding of the characters, or someone besides the main character who wants to be a great drummer.

Anyone else play drums in here?

I absolutely adore it as well. Brilliant.
Same. Hugh fan of Miles.
Iím here only on Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays. Thatís why Iím here now.

I had some issues with Whiplash that kept me from accepting it as a complete movie experience, but most of the folks on this site really loved it and JK Simmons was quite good.

That elusive hide-and-seek cow is at it again
I have no desire to watch this film.

Makes sense. One does not simply watch this film. It's an experience!

Makes sense. One does not simply watch this film. It's an experience!
Do not care to experience. Not my type of film. I care little about jazz music.

FWIW, it's not really about jazz. Liking jazz is definitely not a requirement. I guess liking jazz might enhance the experience a little.

That elusive hide-and-seek cow is at it again
So uh...
I just picked up a pack of Dial soap bars and about 10 or so towels from the Dollar Store. Anyone else on the same page as me?
"My Dionne Warwick understanding of your dream indicates that you are ambivalent on how you want life to eventually screw you." - Joel

"Ever try to forcibly pin down a house cat? It's not easy." - Captain Steel

"I just can't get pass sticking a finger up a dog's butt." - John Dumbear

That elusive hide-and-seek cow is at it again
It's well made. It's entertaining. But I wasn't in love with it or anything.

I got down on my knees and proposed. She rejected me though. Said i was moving too fast. Then too slow. Then too fast again and finally slapped me for my efforts.