Friday, September 16, 2011


UFC Fans rejoice!! This was your movie, why did you not embrace it? I saw this flick last week but I didn't get a chance to get my review in on time. I'm not sure it would have made much of a difference. It stunk at the box office making only a weak 5 million. I thought this was a multi-billion dollar business with die-hard fans? Fans who have been screaming for a movie that reveals the honor and prestige of their craft while proving once again they are the real deal and the WWE is a laughable clownish fake. I guess the filmmakers didn't pander enough to that crowd, or maybe it was just too close in plot to the Fighter from last year. I don't know, but personally I really enjoyed the movie. It did have similar themes to the Fighter but overall it felt like a really good post-9/11 recession fueled flick, with fleshed out real characters.
Estranged brothers, Tommy (Tom Hardy) and Brendan (Joel Edgerton) sign up for a UFC contest in Atlantic City to fight for the 5 million dollar purse. Tommy is a hard drinking former Marine who appears to be bottling up so much anger and resentment that he could explode at any time. His brother Brendan is a school teacher and former UFC fighter who is finding the recession is taking its toll on his family. He's looking at an eviction notice if he can't pay his bills his family is out on the street. Both of them seem to be holding grudges against one another but they both seem to have one thing in common, the mutual hatred of their formally drunk and abusive father Paddy (Nick Nolte). Tommy tries to put his feelings aside as he asks his old man to train him for the contest but finds that almost impossible to do.
This was a much better movie than I thought it was going to be. There are many worn out themes here but the director and the actors take a so-so script and make it much better than it probably should be. Tom Hardy hasn't steered me wrong yet, everything I've seen him in proves time and time again what a fantastic actor he is. It was nice seeing Nick Nolte in something worthy again too. The man is a train wreck personally but he's still a great actor. The fight scenes were really intense and they didn't feel staged. It really did feel like an updated Rocky. It was hard to root against either brother. And as much as I enjoyed the contestants battle it out I really was annoyed with the in-movie commentators. I felt like they were tacked on for that elusive UFC audience that ironically didn't show up for this movie. They gave them way too much air-time and it made it feel more like a cheap spectacle rather than a heavy weight match-up. No offense to those UFC fans out there but it reminded me of the WWE announcers. The thing that aggravated me the most was the one thing the film could not control. In the trailers, they hype up the fight between the two brothers the problem is they don't fight till the end. Which means all of the really intense fighting they have to do up to that point is lost because the audience already knows they are going to meet each other in the final round. It's really sad to because there was one fight that Brendan had that had me at the edge of my seat even when I knew he was going to win. They shot the hell out of it to great effect. If I were the filmmakers I would have been pissed about those trailers.
This is really an entertaining flick and you may get a little choked up at the end especially if you have a brother, like Bryan's Song, Rudy and even 61*, it does a great job of sucking you into these characters and really feeling something genuine for them. Which makes it all the more sad when one of them falls. Don't waste your time on some of the gunk out there, you've got Moneyball coming out in a week but if you have to see a movie before that, especially if you are feeling the sports movie, then you won't be disappointed.

Grade: 3 and a half Buckets

1 comment:

entertainment news said...

Warrior is not one of the best movies but its an average movie. What goes in favor of the movie is its direction and performances. I really like Tom Hardy in his character. I agree that movie has similarity with Fighter. I enjoyed it.