Friday's Top Five: Rock 'n' roll movies
July 29th, 2011
10:18 AM ET

Friday's Top Five: Rock 'n' roll movies

Amy Winehouse’s passing is a reminder that so many music industry legends leave us too soon. For sad and mysterious reasons, it seems that many can’t make it past their 27th birthday.

Luckily, their stories are still with us in their music and, for some, also on film.

A few movies on this week’s list include rock bio pics. These have a pretty standard formula: The movies introduce the subjects before they were celebrities, and follow them as they rocket to fame and fortune.  In many cases, their lives either spiral out of control or result in some sort of tragedy (i.e. a first class ticket to rehab, an organ transplant candidacy, or an abusive relationship).

What are you favorite Rock n’ Rollas?  Here’s mine:

  1. The Doors (1991):  “I am the lizard king.  I can do anything.” – Jim Morrison (This pic is also the last good movie starring Val Kilmer.)

  1. The Last Waltz (1978):  If you haven’t seen this Scorsese doc, then you’re missing one of the best concerts ever recorded.  Today it remains a testament to The Band’s diverse influences and timeless sound.

  1. La Bamba (1987):  “The sky belongs to the stars.” – Buddy Holly

  1. Ray (2004):  “Yeah, yeah. I'm gonna make it do what it do, baby.” – Ray Charles

  1. Almost Famous (2000):  “I am a golden god” – Russell Hammond

Honorable Mentions:

  • Walk the Line (2005):  “This one's for your warden!” – Johnny Cash

  • What’s Love Got To Do With It (1993):  “Go straight to hell, Ike!” – Tina Turner

  • Once (2006):  “Take this sinking boat and point it home...we’ve still got time.” – Glen Hansard featuring Marketa Irglova

  • Oh, God! You Devil (1984):  “Believe me... I'm possible.” – The Devil

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  1. Dale Kachmar

    Entering a new school, Milam, for sixth grade in September 1946, Presley was regarded as a loner. The following year, he began bringing his guitar in on a daily basis. He played and sang during lunchtime, and was often teased as a "trashy" kid who played hillbilly music. The family was by then living in a largely African-American neighborhood.-,

    Most current posting on our very own internet page

    May 4, 2013 at 11:15 pm | Report abuse |
  2. ml

    Are you kidding me–"the last good film Val Kilmer starred in"? Need evidence that you're wrong, big guy? I'm your Huckleberry. Must've missed Tombstone.

    September 23, 2011 at 11:27 am | Report abuse |
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    September 6, 2011 at 4:02 am | Report abuse |
  4. mbyr909


    The Rutles: All You Need Is Cash

    August 31, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
  5. beenz

    Ladies and Gentlemen: The Fabulous Stains!!

    August 29, 2011 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Marilyn

    What! No Hard Day's Night!!

    August 26, 2011 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
  7. spot126

    Mr. Rock and Roll: The story of Alan Freed. No mention of the man who shaped rock and roll.
    Gypsy "83"
    The Rocker
    Black Roses 1988 horror classic

    but seriously how could you forget

    Light of Day 1987 Michael J. Fox, Joan Jett....The Barbusters

    If you not seen this movie please go rent it buy it borrow it from someone steal it whatever just watch this film TONIGHT.

    August 21, 2011 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Angie

    You can't leave out the movie of all Punk Rock movies,


    and also


    August 16, 2011 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Juice

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    August 16, 2011 at 2:52 am | Report abuse |
  10. Led Head

    #11 – "Let There Be Rock" – AC/DC. Guaranteed to fry your screen and melt your speakers 🙂

    August 14, 2011 at 2:44 am | Report abuse |
  11. Led Head

    CNN edging ever closer to Entertainment Weekly in terms of complete insignificance. What a horrible list.

    My Picks:

    1. This Is Spinal Tap
    2. Heavy Metal (1981)
    3. The Kids Are Alright
    4. American Hot Wax
    5. FM
    6. The Rocky Horror Picture Show
    7. High Fidelity
    8. The Wall
    9. The Song Remains The Same
    10. Hedwig & The Angry Inch

    August 14, 2011 at 2:40 am | Report abuse |
  12. Ed

    No Rocky Horror Picture Show?
    No Spinal Tap?
    No Hard Day's Night?

    Seriously CNN, who makes these lists? They're terrible. This is almost as bad as the 4th of July list, which was an absolute joke.

    And The Last Waltz? Concert films shouldn't be considered IMO, otherwise I'd just name 5 of those.

    August 13, 2011 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
  13. Stacey

    Eddie and The Cruisers
    Walk The Line
    That Thing You Do
    The Labrynth
    I watch all of these every time I see them on.

    August 1, 2011 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Jenn

    No Buddy Holly Story?

    August 1, 2011 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
  15. T

    "Include rock bio pics. These have a pretty standard formula: The movies introduce the subjects before they were celebrities, and follow them as they rocket to fame and fortune. In many cases, their lives either spiral out of control or result in some sort of tragedy (i.e. a first class ticket to rehab, an organ transplant candidacy, or an abusive relationship)."

    There's plenty of rock films that fufill the above subjects but it would be too depressing, I'll rather see a good film where everybody have fun and have a great time.

    1. HELP ! – Beatles, Leo McKern, Eleanor Bron,
    2. A HARD DAY's NIGHT – Beatles, Wilfred Brambell, and a very young Phil Collins.
    3. THIS IS SPINAL TAP – Michael McKean, Christopher Guest, Harry Shearer, Patrick MacNee
    4. I WANNA HOLD YOUR HAND – Wendie Jo Sperber, Nancy Allen, Eddie Deezen, Marc McClure
    5. American Grafitti – Ron Howard, Harrison Ford,
    6. T.N.T. Show (1964)
    7. And the sequel, to the TNT Show = The T.A.M.I. Show (1966)

    August 1, 2011 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
  16. Drew

    Your list lacks Detroit Rock City. It is, therefore, invalid,

    August 1, 2011 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
  17. BigAl

    No American Hot Wax?

    August 1, 2011 at 9:07 am | Report abuse |
  18. Pragmatist

    Jailhouse Rock and the Buddy Holly Story

    August 1, 2011 at 8:48 am | Report abuse |
  19. Adam

    Really? Let There Be Rock was finally released on DVD? I'm so pleased to hear that. It's a hundred times better than Stop Making Sense, excellent though that is. Thanks for letting me know! I can't imagine how long it might otherwise have taken me to find out that great news. I once found an old, battered rental VHS of this movie and showed it to my co-parent, who has very little time for hard rock. Like almost everybody who has ever seen it, she was completely blown away by its incendiary energy. And yet, in between some of the songs there are interview clips with the band members who are in their hotel rooms, and they seem like such nice kids, just sort of spaced out and talking bollocks. They seem like such likeable, easy-going guys... Other than that, I have to agree that Spinal Tap is the definitive 'rockumentary'. If only because every real film at least about the heavier bands, from Anvil – The Story of Anvil to Iron Maiden – Flight 666, always ends up being exactly the same as Spinal Tap! It's uncanny!

    August 1, 2011 at 3:48 am | Report abuse |
  20. Lightseeker

    "A few movies on this week’s list include rock bio pics", the key word is BIO people, learn something!

    August 1, 2011 at 3:37 am | Report abuse |
  21. jo

    sid and nancy...

    July 31, 2011 at 11:56 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Steve

    Did anyone ever see HAIL HAIL ROCK AND ROLL????? The story of how Keith Richards decides that Chuck Berry needs a good back up band and gets one going ... This movie should be in the top five...

    July 31, 2011 at 10:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • jo

      classic when keith richards tells story of how chuck punched him

      July 31, 2011 at 11:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Stan

      Steve –

      I forgot about that one when I left my comment – thanks for mentioning it. "Monterey Pop" is another strong contender, but I think this writer is one of many people in this profession who believe that the world was created in 1980.

      August 1, 2011 at 2:29 am | Report abuse |
  23. Allison

    Hard Day's Night
    Across The Universe
    I Wanna Hold Your Hand

    July 31, 2011 at 7:45 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Philip Hades

    Uhm, Rock and Roll Highschool? Duh.

    July 31, 2011 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Paul

    I see you are being slammed for leaving out most of the best rock and roll movies ever made. I was going to ask when you were born since you left out "A Hard Days Night", "Tommy", and so forth. But I think others have made my point. Go back under the rock from which ye came!

    July 31, 2011 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • 3-days

      The Gift, with Perry Farrell....Wish i could find that movie on DVD..I havnt seen it in 15 years...This guy needs a rock and roll history lesson.
      I bet he calls glee, rock and roll....

      August 9, 2011 at 10:46 am | Report abuse |
  26. JoeyM

    I guess we can never really have the ultimate list coz of generation gap and all that
    Well my list goes like this:

    1. Pink Floyd THE WALL
    3. ANVIL

    6. David Bowie LABYRINTH
    9. ONCE

    July 31, 2011 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Peter

    1. Rock n Roll High School
    2. Spinal Tap
    3. The Wall
    4. The Great Rock n Roll Swindle
    5. Walk The Line

    July 31, 2011 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Pete

    hello, THE WALL

    July 31, 2011 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
  29. bakshi

    What trogolodytes! What about AMERICAN POP – a Ralph Bakshi classic with a Seger soundtrack! I guess I'm the only one who saw it, but you really should check it out – it's awesome!

    July 31, 2011 at 1:34 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Will

    Derrrr...the Doors is last good movie starring Val Kilmer?!?!?!? Really? How about Kiss Kiss Bang Bang or Spartan. Not to mention: Heat, Tombstone, Wonderland, True Romance....please, get a grip...

    July 31, 2011 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
  31. Ed

    The Doors was Val Kilmer's last good movie? Are you mildly retarded or completely retarded? Have you seen Tombstone? Have you seen Kiss Kiss Bang Bang? Put down the bong and catch up with other movies.

    July 31, 2011 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
  32. Big Earl

    quadrophenia? Ring any bells? Also, if you are going to talk about "rock n roll" then as othes have said, you are probably required to add Rock N Roll HIgh School. Maybe a Beatles movies too. So... I agree on the first two, after that this list gets lame.

    July 31, 2011 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
  33. Shewolf0110

    Definitely Light of Day should be in there. Cleveland does rock, or did back in the day.

    July 31, 2011 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
  34. Pixyl

    "No Nukes" and I agree "Rattle and Hum" should have been on there as well as "Spinal Tap".

    July 31, 2011 at 8:20 am | Report abuse |
  35. Adam

    Let There Be Rock is by a very long way, the most thrilling concert movie I've ever seen. Unfortunately I don't think it has ever been released on DVD. It kicks an incredible amount of ass. Tragically, Bon Scott died soon after it was made and AC/DC have carried on for thirty-odd years with a different singer. A lot of what they have done since then is unpleasant and embarrassing, but with Bon Scott, they were unbeatable.

    July 31, 2011 at 3:00 am | Report abuse |
  36. Brad8888

    La Bamba was the only decent movie listed by the blogger.

    Saturday Night Fever
    Dirty Dancing
    Purple Rain
    Rocky Horror Picture Show
    This is Spinal Tap
    Pink Floyd: The Wall

    July 31, 2011 at 2:45 am | Report abuse |
  37. Ben

    Levon Helm hated the Last Waltz. Said it was a commercial for "Hollywood" boy Robbie Robertson and his blow buddy Scorcese. The members of the Band never got any money for the film, and Levon said it drove Rick Danko to an early grave. Oh one more thing, Robertson's mic was turned off, as usual, for this concert, because he couldn't sing in harmony with the rest of the band. He also overdubbed most of his solos on the film as well.

    July 31, 2011 at 12:46 am | Report abuse |
  38. Matt

    Dude, Val Kilmer's last good movie was KISS KISS BANG BANG.

    July 30, 2011 at 8:50 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Christian

    My top 5:

    1. Almost Famous
    2. This is Spinal Tap
    3. High Fidelity
    4. Streets of Fire (if you've never seen this - see it!)
    5. Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist

    Honorable mention: Phantom of the Paradise, Purple Rain, Quadrophenia

    July 30, 2011 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
  40. Jon G.

    Hard Day's Night unquestionably #1.
    Only other ones that are TRULY rock `n roll or even matter (in no particular order):

    Gimme Shelter
    This Is Spinal Tap
    The Buddy Holly Story
    Almost Famous
    The Last Waltz
    The Doors.

    The Rose & La Bamba are ersatz "rock `n roll," as many other Hollywood efforts have been.

    July 30, 2011 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
  41. Gunntherd

    Light of day – Joan Jett and Micheal J Fox
    Wayne 's World – both of them had TONS of music

    July 30, 2011 at 7:31 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Kevin

    Elvis Presley – Jailhouse Rock
    The Beatles – A Hard Day's Night
    Led Zeppelin – The Song Remains The Same
    Pink Floyd – The Wall
    The Who – Tommy

    July 30, 2011 at 7:00 pm | Report abuse |
  43. Nick22

    The Commitments! Great movie!

    July 30, 2011 at 6:57 pm | Report abuse |
  44. brad1001

    The Concert for Bangladesh, the Concer for Kampuchea, the concert for ARMS Benefit, The Stones Gimme Shelter, Pink Floyd's The Wall ....

    July 30, 2011 at 6:29 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Nemas14

    The Buddy Holly Story, The Wall, A Hard Days Night, Spinal Tap...

    July 30, 2011 at 6:01 pm | Report abuse |
  46. Howard

    What a dumb list. Someone needs to tell the author what rock and roll is. Ray Charles (Soul), Johnny Cash (Country), Tina Turner (Soul again) and the the Once performers (Muzak) are not ROCK AND ROLL! The Beatles Hard Day's Night? Now that's Rock and Roll and better than any movie on this list!

    July 30, 2011 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • ArchieLeech

      Howie, one thing people from the inner cities and people from the Appalachians have one thing in common – they can ROCK no matter what color their skin or how they dress. Johnny Cash had more in common with Elvis and Dylan than he did with any country artist, most of Tina's hits had much more to do with rock than with soul, and Ray practically invented rock and roll - take a listen to "Mess Around."

      Use your ears.

      July 31, 2011 at 8:38 am | Report abuse |
  47. Megan

    I agree with all your choices, however......Buddy Holly Story! Woodstock! Gimme Shelter!
    Spinal Tap! It's difficult to choose just top five....

    July 30, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Adam

    two words...THE WALL

    July 30, 2011 at 4:04 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Paul H. Roe

    A Hard Days Night
    The Wall
    Sid and Nancy
    Pulp Fiction (just for the soundtrack)

    July 30, 2011 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Wock N Woll

    Queen – Live At Wembley.
    Pink Floyd – The Wall
    Bowie – Live In Santa Monica

    July 30, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  51. DP

    Buddy Holly Story with Gary Busey – Fantastic!
    The Grateful Dead Movie – their last shows at Winterland before "retiring"
    Stop Making Sense – Talking Heads (how could you leave this one out?)
    Woodstock – for crying out loud
    Ladies and Gentlemen, The Rolling stones – their 1972 tour on the Exile On Mail Street album release

    July 30, 2011 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Gavin Ford

    Tommy (1975) ALWAYS should be mentioned on any list of great rock movies! Roger Daltrey, Elton John and Tina Turner simply rocked it and Ann-Margret was even nominated for an Oscar!

    July 30, 2011 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse |
  53. brandon

    uh.....rock n roll high school? ladies and gentlemen the fabulous stains? spinal tap? the light of day? what the fark??????

    July 30, 2011 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
  54. mooselet

    What about "The Rocker" with Rainn Wilson as a burned out Drummer, and The Blues Brothers (BOTH Movies) being in here? While The Rocker isnt 100% classic yet, as its recent, I do feel it has an amazing soundtrack with a great movie. Also I do have to put in a vote for Rocky Horror Picture Show as well!

    July 30, 2011 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
  55. will

    How does the Buddy Holly Story, Help!, A Hard Day's Night, Yellow Submarine, Across the Universe, American Graffiti, and The Beat Goes On, not on this list?

    July 30, 2011 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
  56. Jason

    1. Spinal Tap
    2. Spinal Tap
    3. Spinal Tap
    4. Spinal Tap
    5. Spinal Tap

    Spinal Tap goes to 11, those other 5 can be 12-16

    July 30, 2011 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse |
  57. GordonsGirl

    Until Spinal Tap is in the Top 5, this list cannot be taken with an ounce of seriousness. It's simply the greatest R&R movie of all time.

    July 30, 2011 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
  58. Svetta

    FM? Jimmy Buffett
    No Nukes? Springsteen

    July 30, 2011 at 1:20 pm | Report abuse |
  59. Jimbo

    Gimme Shelter
    Spinal Tap
    Eddie and the Cruisers
    The Commitments

    July 30, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
  60. Tom Hartman

    Any rock movie list that doesn't list A Hard Days Night is a joke. It only changed everything from the fast cutting to offbeat humor to effectively capturing the times perfectly. The list had to have been made by a 20 year old.

    July 30, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
  61. PartyJC

    The Doors & Almost Famous were completely bad movies. And although Ray was a great movie...its not Rock. The writer must be a young journalist wannabe to not list A Had Day's Night or Help or Tommy or The Wall as quintessential ROCK movies.

    That said how do you miss Hail! Hail! Rock and Roll? Chuck Berry is one of the main artists that gave birth to Rock N Roll.

    And The Commitments is a great movie too.

    July 30, 2011 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  62. Ian

    The Kids Are Alright
    Still Crazy
    Trick Or Treat
    Eat The Rich

    July 30, 2011 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
  63. Mike

    Stop Making Sense is not only one of the best rock movies ever, it also happens to be one of my favorite films period.

    Jonathan Demmes's second best film! It really needs to be on the list.

    July 30, 2011 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
  64. Derrick

    Can't believe only two people put The Wall on here. How sad. What about Purple Rain, Tommy, Rocky Horror, Stop Making Sense, etc.

    July 30, 2011 at 10:14 am | Report abuse |
  65. Rock God

    CNN has a very sad idea of what "rock 'n' roll" is. Why not at the Justin Bieber movie? It was in 3D!!!

    Obviously the greatest REAL rock movie was ROCK N ROLL HIGH SCHOOL, starring The Ramones!

    CNN, you are now dead to me. Time to bookmark MSNBC.

    July 30, 2011 at 10:03 am | Report abuse |
  66. Chonto

    200 MOTELS!! Zappa and the Mothers, Ringo and Keith Moon as a groupie nun. That's numero uno. Also: MC5: A True Testimonial, The Kids Are Alright, No Direction Home, Woodstock, Last Waltz, all the Beatles films. Spinal Tap.

    July 30, 2011 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
  67. erich2112x

    Up in Smoke
    The Last Waltz
    Spinal Tap
    Some Kind Of Monster
    Alternate: Stop Making Sense

    July 30, 2011 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
  68. arturo

    Grateful Dead Movie
    Stop Making Sense
    The Last Waltz
    The Doors

    July 30, 2011 at 8:43 am | Report abuse |
  69. LL

    Hooray for Friday's Top Five! This is so much fun!
    Here's my list:

    1. The Last Waltz
    2. Amadeus
    3. High Fidelity – "Get your patchouli stink out of my store!" (love this soundtrack)
    4. Velvet Goldmine
    5. Spinal Tap

    Honorable Mention:

    Walk the Line
    Hustle and Flow

    July 30, 2011 at 8:37 am | Report abuse |
  70. Just Me

    I'm surprised not to see The Wall in the list.

    July 30, 2011 at 5:13 am | Report abuse |
  71. Kitch

    This list is a sham without Spinal Tap. It would have to be number 1. Rocky Horror Picture Show number 2. How could anyone leave them off a list?

    July 30, 2011 at 2:15 am | Report abuse |
  72. Leigh Ritchie

    Where is Velvet Goldmine? Seriously.

    July 30, 2011 at 12:42 am | Report abuse |
  73. gunflash

    one more................Rock around the clock

    July 30, 2011 at 12:10 am | Report abuse |
  74. soggynode

    If you're gonna throw up la bamba, might as well put up eddie and the cruisers and the buddy holly story (gary busey as buddy holly is a sight you can't un-see)

    July 29, 2011 at 11:48 pm | Report abuse |
  75. Chip

    Apparently, you've never heard of :

    Rock n' Roll High School
    Rude Boy
    This is Spinal Tap
    The Great Rock n Roll Swindle

    Go to Netflix !

    July 29, 2011 at 10:22 pm | Report abuse |
  76. R.W.W. Greene

    The Commitments?

    July 29, 2011 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
  77. AlamoGirl

    Heavy Metal.....what happened to Heavy Metal?

    Monterey Pop
    This is Spinal Tap
    Last Waltz

    July 29, 2011 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
  78. Huckleberry1

    "The Doors" is Kilmer's last great performance? Ugh, yeah. How about "Tombstone." He should have won an Oscar for single handedly making that movie as memorable as it is.

    July 29, 2011 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse |
  79. Louis Fattorusso

    Still Crazy!!!!!!!
    Great Balls of Fire
    24 Hour Party People
    Velvet Underground

    July 29, 2011 at 9:40 pm | Report abuse |
  80. Jeffer65

    That Thing You Do
    Pink Floyd at Pompei

    July 29, 2011 at 9:31 pm | Report abuse |
  81. OvernOut

    Honorable Mention goes to Neil Young's "Rust Never Sleeps". I actually saw that concert, it's one of the first VHS tapes I ever bought, because I had to see that concert again! Sort of cool when you can relive one of your absolute favorite concerts from the 70s with your kids!

    July 29, 2011 at 9:23 pm | Report abuse |
  82. Tom

    My goodness this is a lame list. 200 motels. The Grateful Dead Movie. Easy Rider. Blues Brothers. Hard Days Night. Ask your parents, maybe they'll let you stay up late and watch something good.

    July 29, 2011 at 9:20 pm | Report abuse |
  83. Andrew

    Spinal Tap?

    July 29, 2011 at 9:16 pm | Report abuse |
  84. OvernOut

    Woodstock, Blues Brothers, Spinal Tap, American Graffiti....and what about Elvis, The King of Rock and Roll? His best movie was "Jailhouse Rock", I think I'd put that on the list somewhere.

    July 29, 2011 at 9:14 pm | Report abuse |
  85. Marcus Molar

    American Graffiti ????

    July 29, 2011 at 8:37 pm | Report abuse |
  86. Danko Ramone

    You give honorable mention to a George Burns "Oh God," movie, but leave out the the Ramones' Rock N Roll High School?

    July 29, 2011 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
  87. Diamond Rick

    I could watch The Last Waltz 100 times. Actually, I think I did.

    July 29, 2011 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |
  88. Philly girl

    Almost Famous!
    The Rose
    The Last Waltz
    La Bamba

    July 29, 2011 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse |
  89. Stan

    Just one more article that demonstrates the short-sightedness of the young. "America Graffiti" and "The Buddy Holly Story" were far better movies than most of the ones on the list, but the writer(s) are probably too young and oblivious to even know of their existence.

    July 29, 2011 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
  90. Bear's Den

    #1 – Grateful Dead

    July 29, 2011 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
  91. MedicMax

    How is "Airheads" not on this list?

    July 29, 2011 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  92. TheAlaskaCurmudgeon

    But why no Pat Boone movies?

    (Wait...never mind.)

    July 29, 2011 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
  93. Peteykins

    Believe it or not, there are Rock 'n' Roll movies prior to the 70s. My all-time favorite is The Girl Can't Help It.

    July 29, 2011 at 7:34 pm | Report abuse |
  94. mr gurrah

    eddie and the cruisers?
    heavy metal?

    July 29, 2011 at 7:18 pm | Report abuse |
  95. flecka

    Gimme Shelter, Stones

    July 29, 2011 at 7:14 pm | Report abuse |
  96. mar shaw

    Purple Rain was a great movie

    July 29, 2011 at 7:09 pm | Report abuse |
  97. DavidLA

    I'm w/ Dave Welles, Streets of Fire is a great movie.

    July 29, 2011 at 6:57 pm | Report abuse |
  98. AN

    Is it wrong that I think "School of Rock" should be on the list? It's wacky, but it captures the spirit of Rock and Roll wonderfully.

    July 29, 2011 at 6:53 pm | Report abuse |
  99. marty


    July 29, 2011 at 6:51 pm | Report abuse |
  100. William

    Come on! That Thing You Do anyone?

    July 29, 2011 at 6:37 pm | Report abuse |
  101. angelus9

    what?....this list is bogus, how old is this writer??? mention of Eddie and the Cruisers 1 and 2????....those are my picks for the top spots

    "I rather be remembered for the music, or not at all" – Eddie Wilson 1965

    July 29, 2011 at 6:02 pm | Report abuse |
  102. Dave

    "THE COMMITTMENTS" you louts.

    July 29, 2011 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse |
  103. Dave Welles

    hey, what about Streets of Fire?

    July 29, 2011 at 5:52 pm | Report abuse |
  104. Mike

    Control–Ian Curtis and Joy Division were destined for greatness.
    Velvet Goldmine–What it was like when David Bowie ruled England
    A Mighty Wind–Folk singers taken to the comedic sword

    July 29, 2011 at 5:34 pm | Report abuse |
  105. Dr.Gonzo

    Apparently the author was too young when a little movie called "American Hot Wax" was released back in 1978. One of the greatst Rock-N-Roll movies ever made. And how about the Buddy Holly story? And do not get me started on Walk the Line. Really? Rock-N-Roll? Someone needs to tell this person the difference between Rock-N-Roll and COUNTRY MUSIC!!!

    This guy/gal needs to go back to World of Warcraft. or better yet, back to their IE6!

    July 29, 2011 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
  106. Pat

    Eddie and the Cruisers is my vote.

    July 29, 2011 at 5:27 pm | Report abuse |
  107. jw

    uh yeah, val kilmer was in tombstone after the doors which is an incredible movie. i also agree that rock star with mark wahlberg was a great movie. almost famous is my number one.

    July 29, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
  108. Maui Wave

    Here are my Top 5 Rock Movies...not in order:
    -Almost Famous
    -Hard Day's Night (Beatles)
    -Rock Star (Mark Wahlberg)
    -La Bamba
    -Purple Rain

    July 29, 2011 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  109. bobby d

    Renaldo & Clara

    July 29, 2011 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse |
  110. NES

    This was such a "phone-in" piece with no depth of knowledge on this subject of Rock N' Roll in movies. There are so many other talented film critic wantabe's out there and this smuck get paid for writing something with the dept of a phone book. Amazing!

    July 29, 2011 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
  111. Ron

    Please remember "A Hard Day's Night" and "Help" both 4 star movies.

    July 29, 2011 at 4:44 pm | Report abuse |
  112. Dennis

    There is an anti-woman bias it seems in the movie about the "The Runaways" Joan Jett and the rest of her band members

    July 29, 2011 at 4:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • clash77

      The Runaways is a great story, but the movie was very poorly executed. They chose a pathetic actress to play the lead too.

      As for other rocknroll movies, Westway to the World and Let's Rock Again are both tops.

      July 29, 2011 at 5:49 pm | Report abuse |
  113. Phil

    don't agree with La Bamba. Woodstock should be on the list, Hard Days Night, Blues Brothers, The Wall, and Tommy should have be mentioned,

    July 29, 2011 at 4:43 pm | Report abuse |
  114. TJ

    "Almost Famous" was a really good movie and yet they never show it. Not even on VH1 Rock and roll movies!!

    July 29, 2011 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse |
  115. blackdog

    I can't take this list seriously. There is no Spinal Tap.

    July 29, 2011 at 4:13 pm | Report abuse |
  116. Charles

    Almost everyone's list is better than the original author's. I would treat concert films separately, and include Woodstock, Festival Express, The Last Waltz, Stop Making Sense and The Song Remains the Same on a list of the great concert films.As for the greatest Rock'n' Roll movies - movies that tell a story about rock'n'roll and are at the same time infused with the spirit of rock'n'roll - here is my list:
    1. Hedwig & The Angry Inch
    2. A Hard Day's Night
    3. The Commitments
    4. The Blues Brothers
    5. Dig!

    July 29, 2011 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
  117. Sam

    "Oh God You Devil"...really? I would have put "The Buddy Holly Story" in its place. And even though it's a rock and roll parody, "Walk Hard-The Dewey Cox Story" must be on this list.

    July 29, 2011 at 4:06 pm | Report abuse |
  118. Dale

    1. The Last Waltz
    2. Almost Famous
    3. Stop Making Sense
    4. The T.A.M.I. Show
    5. This is Spinal Tap

    July 29, 2011 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse |
  119. Paulina

    Oh, and don't forget "URGH! A Music War", though I guess that doesn't technically qualify as a "rock" movie. And "The Decline of Western Civilization" is a CLASSIC.

    July 29, 2011 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
  120. Paulina

    "Rock-Rock-Rock-Rock...Rock n' Roll High School......"

    July 29, 2011 at 3:59 pm | Report abuse |
  121. gracie

    Okay, how can Purple Rain not be on this list?

    July 29, 2011 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
  122. jon

    Almost Famous is among my top 10 favorite movies of all time. You could also throw in Pirate Radio; which was like one big rock opera.

    July 29, 2011 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
  123. Ollie Liverpool

    If we get to include all pop musicians
    Pink Floyd: The Wall
    Spinal Tap
    A Mighty Wind
    I'm Not There (About Bob Dylan)
    Coal Miner's Daughter
    Sid and Nancy
    Almost Famous
    Purple Rain
    A Hard Day's Night

    July 29, 2011 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
  124. John

    Yeah, without Spinal Tap, this list fails. Though I agree with the Doors, the Last Waltz, and Almost Famous. I'd probably try to work the Boat That Rocked in there as well. Honorable mention: Fubar.

    July 29, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
  125. batgirl

    The Commitments?

    The Buddy Holly Story?

    Rock around the Clock?

    July 29, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  126. Warren

    I don't think I see "The Commitments" (Alan Parker dir., 1991) on anyone's post. This is a must-see if you haven't: a bunch of kids in dead-end Dublin put together an American-style soul band. The scenes of them putting their sound together and playing their first gigs really communicate the joy and power of making music.

    July 29, 2011 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  127. Al Sirois

    The Commitments
    That Thing You Do
    This is Spinal Tap

    July 29, 2011 at 3:30 pm | Report abuse |
  128. KT

    1. That Thing You Do
    2. Standing in the Shadow of Motown
    3. Spinal Tap
    4. Almost Famous
    5. It Might Get Loud

    July 29, 2011 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • KT

      Honorable mentions:
      Beatles Anthology, The Buddy Holly Story, I Wanna Hold Your Hand, The Police Around the World, Magical Mystery Tour

      July 29, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  129. John

    WOW!!!! Noone mentions Rattle and Hum??? Isn't that the top grossing concert movie of all time? If you're putting the Last Waltz on your list, Rattle and Hum goes on there too, if not before it.
    "Charles Mansion stole this from the Beatles, we're stealing it back"

    July 29, 2011 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  130. Ralph

    Y'all are idiots fro not including "Talking Heads – Stop Making Sense" THE ALL TIME BEST R&R Film. Why nobody here lists that move is beyond me. There is no better concert/Rock & Roll Movie ever made.

    July 29, 2011 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jack

      I've seen it and I know why it's not on the list. The reason is simple...Talking Heads SUCK. Ever consider that the idiot was you?

      July 29, 2011 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
  131. Kim

    My favorite (I can't believe no one has mentioned it!) is "Across The Universe." FABULOUS!!!

    July 29, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
  132. amanda

    No 'This is Spinal Tap'????? Are you mad??

    July 29, 2011 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  133. John Clark

    Under Great White Northern Lights. About the 2007 tour of Canada by The White Stripes. The last 10 minutes of the move have more raw, real emotions than ALL the movies listed combined!

    July 29, 2011 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
  134. Top5Fan

    Josh, some of these people are LOSERS!! They would have Grease on here if they could. You were spot-on once again with this list. Thank you for making Friday more fun, once again.

    July 29, 2011 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  135. Mike

    As someone else commented, I'd go with The Rose as #1. And The Doors was not Val Kilmer's last good movie; the following year he did Thunderheart, whcih is one of my all time favorites. While not exactly in the Rock category, if you ever do a list of the top blues movies, make sure you see 1986's Crossroads, which stars Ralph Maccio and Joe Seneca and has great blues music by Ry Cooder and great rock by Steve Vai.

    July 29, 2011 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
  136. sjparadiso

    The Last Waltz

    July 29, 2011 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
  137. Sista

    Love the list and the format but Walk the Line needs to be in the top 5.

    July 29, 2011 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
  138. Loren

    Is this guy on drugs? No, "That Thing You Do"? Maybe he discounts it because it plays more sixties pop than gritty rock and roll, but this is the story of rock & roll done as only Tom Hanks could. Not to be missed.

    July 29, 2011 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
  139. JoeyATL

    Rock N Roll High School, High Fidelity and This Is Spinal Tap are essentials.

    July 29, 2011 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
  140. Neptunes

    "Do your parents know that you're Ramones." from Rock'n'Roll High School

    July 29, 2011 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
  141. LA Shutterbug

    Oh, come on..."The Doors"? Really? I guess Val's (last) masterful performance obscured the fact that that piece of Oliver Stone revisionist history was a muddling mess. How you can put that and "La Bamba" on this list and leave off "Don't Look Back" and "Spinal Tap"?

    July 29, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • AndyG

      You're so right about "The Doors", that was a terrible movie. It was hardly even worth laughing at. As soon as I saw it at the top of this list I knew the whole list was nonsense.

      July 30, 2011 at 12:57 am | Report abuse |
    • taffd

      you are sooooooooooo correct! For me it was "A Hard Day's Night", which showed the pure joy of rock and roll.

      September 19, 2011 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
  142. Neptune

    The Filth and the Fury
    Rock'n'Roll High School
    A Hard Day's Night

    July 29, 2011 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • flecka

      Totally, Neptune! I might add Great Balls of Fire, Nowhere Boy, School of Rock, That'll Be the Day/Stardust, Hard Day's Night, Help!, Buddy Holly Story...& the list goes on!

      July 29, 2011 at 6:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • flecka

      As you've included Filth and Dig (LOVED)...what about It Might Get Loud

      July 29, 2011 at 6:41 pm | Report abuse |
  143. Zero_gee

    Oh God! You Devil has as much to do with rock & roll as Jonathon Livingstone Seagull has to do with, well, seagulls.

    July 29, 2011 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
  144. Marty DiBergi

    This is Spinal Tap: A Rockumentary

    It goes to 11.

    July 29, 2011 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |
  145. Johnny Rotten

    Sid & Nancy

    July 29, 2011 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • R'nRSwindle

      Gary Olldman deserved an academy award for his portrayal of Sid Viscious.

      July 30, 2011 at 9:00 am | Report abuse |
  146. Babs & Kris

    A Star is Born
    "Are you a figment of my imagination, or am i one of yours?"

    July 29, 2011 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
  147. Zero_gee

    (Does anybody remember laughter?)

    July 29, 2011 at 1:41 pm | Report abuse |
  148. Zero_Gee

    Oops. Put Tommy in at 10

    July 29, 2011 at 1:40 pm | Report abuse |
  149. Monty Python

    The Ruttles: All You Need is Cash

    July 29, 2011 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • RedRiderBB

      Hell Yeah!!! Best Ever. C.H.E.E.S.E.A.N.D.O.N.I.O.N.S. Ohh Noo.

      Keep yourself clean.

      July 29, 2011 at 2:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • TheAlaskaCurmudgeon

      Yes, the Rutles. They were brutally ripped off by Blind Lemon Pie, weren't they?

      July 29, 2011 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
  150. Tom Mc

    Phantom of the Paradise!

    July 29, 2011 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  151. Zero_Gee

    1. The Song Remains the Same
    2. Pink Floyd: The Wall
    3. The Last Waltz
    4. This is Spinal Tap
    5. Woodstock
    6. Hendrix
    7. Almost Famous
    8. The Rose
    9. Rocky Horror Picture Show
    10 Dead Man's Curve
    10. Monterey Pop

    July 29, 2011 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
  152. george

    anything about doodoo or the california raisins. them california raisins could rock.

    July 29, 2011 at 1:15 pm | Report abuse |
  153. Stig

    Anvil! The Story of Anvil
    Hard Core Logo – no one outside of Canada has heard of it, but it's awesome.
    King Creole – Elvis did at one time rule.
    The Great Rock and Roll Swindle
    I Wanna Hold Your Hand – Teens trying to see the Beatles
    Detroit Rock City – Teens trying to see Kiss

    July 29, 2011 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dan

      I'd second: Anvil! The Story of Anvil. Maybe the best "rockumentary" ever.

      Spinal Tap has to be on the list
      Rocky Horror Picture Show
      A Hard Days Night: Rotten movie with great songs, and the scene with Ringo walking along the river with some kid is great.

      July 29, 2011 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
  154. Dave in Indy

    1. The Last Waltz
    2. High Fidelity
    3. This is Spinal Tap
    4. Almost Famous
    5. Woodstock

    July 29, 2011 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
  155. jdhartlv

    My wife found this on Facebook.

    "Everyone knows Amy Winehouse died. Who are Justin Allen 23, Brett Linley 29, Matthew Weikert 29, Justus Bartett 27, Dave Santos 21, Jesse Reed 26, Matthew Johnson 21, Zachary Fisher 24, Brandon King 23, Christopher Goeke 23, and Sheldon Tate 27....All Marines that gave their lives this week for you. There is no media coverage for them... not even a mention of their names. Honor them by posting this."

    Think about that.

    July 29, 2011 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • SB

      That's not the topic of this forum. Think about THAT, you self-righteous jerk.

      July 29, 2011 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • JUSTIN

      Thank you so much for bringing that to everyones attention lets honor people who deserve to be honored. celebrities get way to much attention when there are much more important people giving thier lives for thier country and all of us. what did winehouse do for her country?

      July 29, 2011 at 6:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lou Christine

      Thank you for the reality check!

      August 1, 2011 at 10:04 am | Report abuse |
  156. manwithaplan

    great list! love the utube trailers!

    July 29, 2011 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
  157. igor

    La Bamba w/Lou Diamond? Thats hilarious and equally stupid.

    July 29, 2011 at 11:45 am | Report abuse |
  158. POOF

    YES–DREAMGIRLS–more anti women evidence.

    July 29, 2011 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
  159. Ron31

    Here are my personal favorites:

    1.The Temptations
    2.Hysteria:The Def Leppard Story
    4.The Rocky Horror Picture Show
    5.Cadillac Records

    July 29, 2011 at 11:30 am | Report abuse |
  160. The Last Prime

    I love the list. Dreamgirls should definitely be an honorable mention.

    July 29, 2011 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
  161. DAD

    Great format. What happened to THE ROSE and LADY SINGS THE BLUES–both great–not to mwention the one about Edith Piaf–are we anti-women??

    July 29, 2011 at 11:21 am | Report abuse |
    • Mom

      I agree with you. I think The Rose was the best movie in this category. What could be better than Bette Midler starring as Janis Joplin???

      July 29, 2011 at 12:10 pm | Report abuse |

    any Beatles movie

    July 29, 2011 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |

    Bill Haileys Rock Concert 1950s

    July 29, 2011 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  164. Top5Fan

    •The Doors
    •Spinal Tap
    •Almost Famous
    •High Fidelity - love John Cusack
    •Eddie and the Cruisers - cheesy in the best way

    July 29, 2011 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
  165. El Farto

    Glee 3D

    July 29, 2011 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
  166. alecia

    What about The Blues Brothers? And Val Kilmer is hilarious as gay Perry in Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang!

    July 29, 2011 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
    • adrifter

      You got it right, dude! The Blues Brothers has some amazing music.

      July 29, 2011 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
  167. pedro

    Mary Poppins

    July 29, 2011 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |

    8 The Song Remains The Same

    July 29, 2011 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Peepeye

      The Song Remains the Same??? Even LZ hated how it turned out! The live concert shots all have lousy sound quality, lousy video quality, and the band has always admitted their performances were lousy.

      July 29, 2011 at 4:12 pm | Report abuse |
  169. wooo

    6 Ziggy Stardust
    7 Tommy (The WHO)

    July 29, 2011 at 10:46 am | Report abuse |
  170. truth

    1 Monterey Pop Festival 1967
    2 Woodstock 1969
    3 Let It Be Beatles 1969
    4 Gimme Shelter 1970
    5 Festival Express 1970 train ride

    July 29, 2011 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Hildy

      I agree with you 100% on your choices! I'd like to add a few of my own: Born to Boogie...with Marc Bolan and Ringo Starr, Easy rock stars in the film itself but the soundtrack is phenomenal, Head..The Monkees & Frank Zappa, 200 Motels, with Frank Zappa, Keith Moon & Ringo Starr.

      July 29, 2011 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Hurlco

      Much better list than the article. Don't forget this one....
      "The MC5:A True Testimonial" will blow every single other rockumentary out of the water once it is released.
      VH1 won't know what to do with that baby.

      July 29, 2011 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • bella

      truly. how could they leave off woodstock???!!!!

      July 30, 2011 at 9:04 am | Report abuse |
  171. Tyler

    No Spinal Tap!?!?!?!?!?!

    July 29, 2011 at 10:24 am | Report abuse |
    • Lisa

      Just what I thought!

      July 29, 2011 at 5:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Martin

      Their list didn't go to 11.

      July 29, 2011 at 5:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • TheAlaskaCurmudgeon

      Spinal Tap is beyond the simplistic conceptions of this article.

      July 29, 2011 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tim B

      I agree. This dude is an idiot. He needs to put down his Tiger Beat and go cut his Bieber haircut. Spinal Tap should have been at the top. and what about "Rockstar" w Mark Wahlberg and Zakk Wylde? idiot

      July 31, 2011 at 1:37 am | Report abuse |
    • aap1970

      I was almost crushed by a midget!!!

      September 1, 2011 at 7:28 pm | Report abuse |
  172. gwen

    Why did they leave out Frosty the Snowman and Red Dawn?
    1 Frosty the Snowman
    2 PeeWees Big Adventure
    3 Red Dawn
    4 Ernest Goes To Hollywood
    5 Babe II A Pig In The City

    July 29, 2011 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
    • The Måd Råp3r

      How could you forget Fight Club?

      July 29, 2011 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
    • Billy

      Rock rock rock rock rock and roll high school!

      July 29, 2011 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Roxstar

      This guy who came up with this is clueless.

      Go have another stick of bubble gum.

      July 30, 2011 at 5:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Eddie Wilson

      I did not notice Eddie & The Cruisers on this list... Quite a shame!

      July 30, 2011 at 6:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Adogg


      July 30, 2011 at 7:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Harvey

      No Spinal Tarp, no list. Fail!

      July 31, 2011 at 12:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • chris

      live the doors!!!

      August 24, 2011 at 4:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Aubrey

      The first sign this list means nothing – totally ignoring the most influential rock band: THE BEATLES. Examples: Hard Day's Night ("Turn left at Greenland" – George Harrison) – the original rockumentary – is one of Roger Ebert's 2 favorite films. Yellow Submarine ("Must be from Kentucky" – Ringo Starr) – critics regularly give this land-breaking film 5 stars. Backbeat – the best film about the formation of The Beatles. Meanwhile, some of the choices above can barely be associated with Rock 'N Roll.

      September 5, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |

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