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Bandslam (2009)

aka Bandslam

"Band Together"

Directed By: 
Details: 111 mins · English · PG (USA)


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Small Sam
Small Charlotte Banks
Small Karen Burton
No_movie_poster Will Burton
Small Ben Wheatly
Small Basher Martin
Small Bug
No_movie_poster Omar
No_movie_poster Irene Lerman (Cello)
No_movie_poster Kim Lee (Keyboards)
No_movie_poster Dylan Dyer (Glory Dogs Guitar)
No_movie_poster Megan
No_movie_poster Ms. Wittenberg
No_movie_poster Kyra 17-1
No_movie_poster Kyra's Friend
No_movie_poster Kid Talking About Miles
No_movie_poster Rapping Boy #1
No_movie_poster Rapping Boy #2
No_movie_poster Slapping Girl
No_movie_poster Rory
No_movie_poster Glue Boy
No_movie_poster Glory Dogs Bass
No_movie_poster Glory Dogs Drummer
No_movie_poster Glory Dogs Saxophone
No_movie_poster The Burning Hotels Guitar / Vocals
No_movie_poster The Burning Hotels Guitar / Vocals
No_movie_poster The Burning Hotels Bass / Vocals
No_movie_poster The Burning Hotels Drummer
No_movie_poster Sa5m's Mom
No_movie_poster New Art Teacher
No_movie_poster Bandslam MC
No_movie_poster Stage Manager
No_movie_poster Bully at the Bus Stop
No_movie_poster Scott Donnelly
No_movie_poster 1st Kid
No_movie_poster 2nd Kid
Small Himself
No_movie_poster Hip Hop Group 'Zeale'
No_movie_poster Hip Hop Group 'Candice'
No_movie_poster Hip Hop Group 'DJ'
No_movie_poster ICGO Saxophone
No_movie_poster ICGO Trombone
No_movie_poster ICGO Trumpet
No_movie_poster The Daze Guitar / Vocals
No_movie_poster The Daze Bass
No_movie_poster The Daze Drummer
No_movie_poster Art Class Girl
No_movie_poster Screaming Teacher
No_movie_poster Dewey Kid
No_movie_poster Rock-N-Roller
No_movie_poster Charlotte's Aunt
No_movie_poster Screaming Fan
No_movie_poster Mr. Berry


No_movie_poster John Gilbert Editor
No_movie_poster Nancy Nayor Casting
No_movie_poster Todd Graff Director
No_movie_poster Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas Producer
No_movie_poster Eric Steelberg Cinematography
No_movie_poster Marisa Yeres Producer
No_movie_poster John Frick Art Direction
No_movie_poster Ron Schmidt Producer
No_movie_poster Jeff Knipp Production Design
No_movie_poster Carla Curry Set Decoration
No_movie_poster Jared Mass Producer
No_movie_poster Ernesto Martinez Costume Design
No_movie_poster Josh A. Cagan Scenario Writer
No_movie_poster Scot Armstrong Production
No_movie_poster Todd Graff Writer
Small Demetri Martin Other
No_movie_poster Josh A. Cagan Story Contributor
Small Demetri Martin Story Contributor
No_movie_poster John Gilbert Editing


"Band Together"

"Where there's a Will, there's a way."

"Music Has The Power To Rock Your World"


Will Burton (Gaelan Connell) is a music enthusiast and a David Bowie fan with a hint of rock and roll and boy next door. Throughout the movie, Will writes journal-like e-mails to Bowie every day, although Bowie never answers. When Will's mother Karen (Lisa Kudrow) finds a new job, he switches to a new school, which he is eager to do since he was bullied at his previous one. During lunch one day at his new school, he meets a girl who says her name is written Sa5m but pronounced Sam, the 5 is silent (Vanessa Hudgens). She tells him about Bandslam, an annual music competition in which the winning band gets a recording contract. Will and Sa5m quickly become friends but, shortly after, he is sought after by another girl named Charlotte Barnes (Aly Michalka). One afternoon, Charlotte asks Will to join her in an after-school day-care center. When she starts inviting him to hang out with her, the teenager is stunned—as is his single mother Karen. Impressed by his eclectic knowledge of music, Charlotte, who is a gifted singer-songwriter, asks Will to manage her rock/ska band. Her goal is apparently to take revenge on her egocentric musician ex-boyfriend Ben Wheatley (Scott Porter) during Bandslam.

Unsure of what he is getting himself into, Will agrees to help Charlotte's band (later called "I Can't Go On, I'll Go On") which includes Bug (Charlie Saxton) and Omar (Tim Jo), eventually expanding it with more like-minded outcasts. These include drummer Basher Martin (Ryan Donowho), who first hesitates because he has anger management issues and dislikes the idea of Bandslam, because he believes people don't appreciate the art, but decides to join after Will tells he has an older sister who is often around (in fact this is Karen). Against all odds, the group's sound starts to come together and their prospects for success look bright. Even more surprising, Will starts losing his "loser-status". Once he gets committed in Charlotte's band, however, he is unable to complete a project he was going to do with Sa5m. After spending a day with Sa5m, Charlotte teaches Will how to properly kiss a girl by showing him one night in the car. Will takes Sa5m to the Overlook, where, after knocking off her hat and ripping her book out of her hand, he kisses her. She asks him to come see a movie with her, but he stands her up after Charlotte gives him tickets to a band called Burning Hotels. After that, Sa5m starts ignoring Will at school. He visits her house, hoping to apologize. Her mom then shows him a video of a younger Sa5m performing "Everything I Own", but when Sa5m walks in, she is outraged and orders Will to leave. As an apology, he makes a short yet touching documentary about her for his Human Studies project (with the song Young Folks included in it) and she eventually forgives him.

After Will accidentally ruins Ben's attempt to reconcile with Charlotte, Ben decides to do a little research on him, in order to ruin his image. He finds out about Will's father, who was sent to prison years ago when he accidentally killed a child while driving drunk. Ben then starts to call Will "Dewey" (just as other students did at his old school), which stands for "DWI", Driving While Intoxicated. Will detests this nickname because it reminds him of his father, whom he is ashamed of. What is more, Charlotte's father dies and she decides to quit the band. As she explains to Will, her father hated how she acted when she was with her ex-boyfriend, so after he got sick, she decided to change her image and be nicer to "people like [Will]", meaning outcasts, hoping that this good behavior would cause her dad to get well. The band members are hurt by this discovery, as it means she did not genuinely like them, but they decide to go on nonetheless, with Sa5m taking over as lead singer.

On the night of Bandslam, Charlotte comes backstage in order to apologize to the band, and after a moment of hesitation, Will accepts her apology. Right before going on stage, however, they discover that Ben's band (the "Glory Dogs") have decided to play the song that "I Can't Go On, I'll Go On" were originally to perform, forcing them to change their act at the last minute. Will suddenly remembers the video Sa5m's mother showed him earlier and suggests that they perform "Everything I Own", since it is the only song Sa5m knows. To buy some time, Will comes out first onstage, but at first he is embarrassingly silent. The students begin to chant "Dewey! Dewey! Dewey!". He starts to walk off the stage, but then comes back and decides to chant with them instead. After a while, he yells into the microphone, "Do we wanna ROCK?!". The band then shows up and fires up the crowd with an upbeat ska version of "Everything I Own".

Although they fail to win the competition, a YouTube video of their performance gains the band popularity at school. David Bowie (portraying himself) sees the video and sends an e-mail to Will, explaining that he is starting an indie music label and is interested in having the band as one of their first artists. Will is so excited and overwhelmed that he falls down in the middle of the school hallway (in the same position as the front cover of Bowie's Lodger album). The last scene takes place during Charlotte's graduation ceremony where Will and Sa5m are confirmed as dating.

Release Dates:

Theatrical : 2009-08-14 : United States of America

DVD : 2010-03-16

2009-08-06 : United States of America