What are the best fictional rock bands of movies? In honor of ‘Get Him to the Greek’, which features Russell Brand playing rocker Aldous Snow, and the upcoming movie ‘Scott Pilgrim v. the World’, which stars Michael Cera as the bass player for the awesomely named band Sex Bob-omb (after the cute and cuddly bomb characters from the Super Mario Bros. games), it seems like the perfect time to take a look back at some of our favorite fictional rock bands of the movies. So from the most well-known fictional rock band ever to a couple of others that should be unforgettable, forget about your “real” music and savor the tastier cheap substitutions with these great fictional rock bands:
The Weird Sisters from ‘Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire’ – Well, the band that performs hits like ‘Do the Hippogriff’ is not actually ever called by name in the movie, but it’s safe to say that the group composed mostly of real-life members of Radiohead and Pulp are supposed to be the band that needs no introduction in the wizarding world. So what makes them one of the best fictional rock bands of movies? Well, they’re the perfect blend of magic and music, and it’s hard to beat lyrics like “shake your booty like a boggart in pain.”
Alice Bowie from ‘Up in Smoke’ – You can’t beat the profound song ‘Earache in my Eye’ by Cheech and Chong, with lyrics like “my dad disowned me because I wear my sister’s clothes.” But what makes them one of the best fictional rock bands of movies is that they know how to put on a show, complete with the right kind of smoky special effects.
Wyld Stallyns from ‘Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure’ – This most excellent of the fictional bands of movies is more triumphant than most, thanks to a storyline that involves the time-travelling duo becoming rulers of the world with 80’s ballads like ‘God Gave Rock N Roll to You’. Too bad their version of the future is totally bogus.
School of Rock from ‘School of Rock’ – Jack Black knows how to make music fun, and the kids he teaches in this flick definitely give his fictional ex-band all that they can handle during a Battle of the Bands. While No Vacancy does emerge victorious in the battle, the cute kids of the School of Rock wow us throughout the whole movie with hits like ‘Teacher’s Pet’, ‘School of Rock’, and an awe-inspiring cover version of AC/DC’s ‘It’s a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock n’ Roll)’. So for proving that school can be fun and that rock is still alive and well, the kids of School of Rock definitely deserve a place at the top of this list of the best fictional rock bands of the movies.
Stillwater from ‘Almost Famous’ – You’ve got to love the 70’s and this fictional band from the era that almost made it really big. From groupies to golden gods, we get the full Stillwater experience in this behind-the-scenes look at one of our favorite fictional rock bands from one of our favorite musical movies. With songs by Cameron Crowe and wife Nancy Wilson of Heart and music by Peter Frampton, it’s a real shame that Stillwater didn’t claim real-world fame.
Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem from ‘The Muppet Movie’ – I can’t picture anyone not smiling when they hear the song ‘Can You Picture That’ from ‘The Muppet Movie’, as one of the grooviest guys to ever lay down a beat will definitely have you moving your feet (even if wires have to get them going). With Animal on drums and Dr. Teeth’s guttural voice, the 9-year-old in me still loves one of the best fictional rock bands from movies full of music.
The Oneders/Wonders from ‘That Thing You Do!’ – Considering I can still remember many of the words to pop rock band The Wonders’ only hit, it’s no wonder they’ve earned a spot on this list of the best fictional rock bands of the movies. The 60’s band may be a one-hit wonder, but Tom Hanks’ discovery still sounds wonderful to me, and their one-and-only hit still makes them one of the greatest fictional rock bands in movie history.
Spinal Tap from ‘This is Spinal Tap’ – There are plenty of great fictional bands in ‘This is Spinal Tap’, but I’ve got to focus on the main event, a metal hair band starring in their own mockumentary. From the miniscule Stonehenge stage decor to the long list of drummers dying from mysterious circumstances (including spontaneous combustion) and the amp that goes to 11, this behind-the-scenes look at one of the best fictional bands ever has to be one of the best movies about a rock band (faux or no) ever made.
Hedwig and the Angry Inch from ‘Hedwig and the Angry Inch’ – This cult classic about a tortured transsexual trying to deal with a botched sex change operation has almost got the fan following of ‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show’, but I’m going to be blasphemous and say that I prefer the music here. There’s just something bizarrely beautiful about the whole ordeal, and many of Hedwig’s songs have been covered by the likes of Cyndi Lauper and Ben Folds (so you know there’s no question that the very unique Hedwig and the Angry Inch is one of the best fictional rock bands of the movies).
The Kelly Affair/Carrie Nations from ‘Beyond the Valley of the Dolls’ – These groovy gals hail from a sinfully psychedelic trip brought to us by Russ Meyer and Roger Ebert (yes, you read that right). The Carrie Nations’ anthem ‘Candy Man’ is oh-so-sweet, but their manager Z-man is definitely no treat. There’s shock value, sex, nudity, and plenty of drugs, making this crazy flick a divine slice of the swingin’ 60’s and 70’s, but get past all of that, and you’ll realize that the Carrie Nations are actually pretty good, and definitely one of the best fictional rock bands in movies.
So from groovy gals to metal mayhem and one-hit wonders, the best fictional rock bands here are an eclectic mix of groups with some of musical movies’ greatest hits (you can see a few of the bands here on this slightly different list of 10 fictional bands). So enjoy their songs, and be sure stay tuned to find out if the rockers of ‘Get Him to the Greek’ and ‘Scott Pilgrim vs. the World’ are just as good.