Drumline is a rather formulaic movie about a young man trying to make a college team without accepting the rules of the game. Robbie Benson played such a role in One on One and there have been countless others. Probably to coincide with the Superbowl, Drumline is now available on Blu-ray.
This is an okay movie, more so if you are part of the 1% who are into marching bands. This movie’s weakness is there is not enough band and too much of the main character, Devon (played by Nick Cannon. Cannon himself does not have the energy to make his character shine much. At 120 minutes, Drumline is also much, much too long: it takes an hour before any real conflict or story begins.
To add to that: Devon comes across as nothing more than a smart-ass whose great ability on the drums make him believe he is greater than Muhammad Ali. Devon is a show-off, not a team player at all, and basically a jerk. The viewer knows nothing about why he is such an a-hole aside from his great talent.
Storylines such as the conflict between Devon and drumline leader Sean (Leonard Roberts), his infatuation with Laila (Zoe Saldana), and a lesser storyline about the band leader (Orlando Jones) being under pressure to make the A&T marching band more hip and less old school. There is also a battle of the bands brewing.
Since director Charles Stone isn’t quite sure which story is most important, Drumline meanders until it finds something it can hold on to and only finds it an hour into the film.
You would also think a movie titled Drumline would feature more music than what this film has.
Special features are a bit hard to read. Aside from the theatrical and extended versions of Drumline are: Commentary by Director Charles Stone III; Half-Time Heroes featurette;
The Real Battle of the Bands featurette; Anatomy of a Drumline featurette; deleted scenes; Dr. Lee Conducts; Battle of the Bands; A&T alternate performance; and Devon and Laila drive off.