Meryl Streep plays Ricki Randazzo, a rocker who once had dreams of stardom and now settles for playing in a cover band in Tarzana at night while working at Total Foods during the day. Such is the premise for Jonathan Demme's Ricki and the Flash, a low-key comedy drama penned by Diablo Cody. Always a director with a keen ear for music, Demme decided to pair Streep with a crack pickup band featuring Rick Springfield -- who also plays Ricki's paramour in the film -- drummer Joe Vitale and Bernie Worrell, then had the soundtrack recorded live in the studio, a nice way to capture the crackling, kinetic energy of a bar band churning away. Apart from "Cold One" -- a made-to-order track written by Jenny Lewis and Johnathan Rice, performed solo and sweetly by Streep -- that's all that the soundtrack is, but the music works on record as well as it does in the movie because it's a band having a good time playing oldies and the occasional new tune ("Bad Romance," "Get the Party Started").
AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine