Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Review: The Fighter

The Fighter is a really cool movie. That's the only way to describe it. I mean, that's a lot to be said about a movie about boxing starring Mark Wahlberg called 'The Fighter' set in Massachusetts. I don't know what I expected, going into that movie, but what I got out of it was not anything close to whatever I expected.
At first, you don't know what kind of genre it's going for. It opens up with a talking head type interview with Bale, so you think it's going to be a documentary-style type deal, but then you start seeing the cameras that are filming the doc and the people doing the interview so your expectations change. It isn't until the title shot that you see what you're in for. The Fighter is a movie documenting real life in a manner similar to a gritty documentary, but captures something in people that is unattainable by way of a documentary: it shows you what going on outside of the documentary and how the people react to it. Obviously, this isn't the entire movie. It's a boxing movie, clearly, and 'the best one I've ever seen. The scenes are classical in their presentation, effortless in their preparation, and decisive in their delivery.
Mark Wahlberg does his part. He's born into a family with, like, 8 sisters that act, as my brother eloquently put it, a 'Greek chorus of Massholes'. Wahlberg downy really do authoring outstanding in the movie other than act of the impedice of the supporting characters conflict. The real story lies with the supporting arc, which is a rare find in today's cinema. Amy Adams is his love interest that fights for him as well as for herself. She's a college dropout searching for something, someone, and the viewer is lost in her journey of self discovery, Melissa Leo plays the spiteful, venomous mother who treats her children like a bear would treat her cubs. Shea really awesome and it's sad that her performance nay be overlooked in the long run. I say overlooked because Christian Bale is by far the best part of the movie. He plays a crack addict who believes that the documentary crew that follows him around is documenting his comeback into the boxing scene, instead of his crack addiction. Ok, here it comes, I'm going to say it- Bale gives a knockout performance. Bam. There it is. This movie is Oscar gold, and would be more bankable had it been released earlier in the decade, where it won't be outshined by the other amazing films that will cast a shadow over it. This movie will not win best picture or best director but that doesn't mean it doesn't deserve attention and respect. It's a really, really great movie that has a specific arc that is easy and fun to follow. It's fun to watch, and that's hard to say about most sports movies.
Anyway, best picture aside, Bale is going to get an Oscar. That's just the bottom line. See the movie, and you'll know right away that this is his movie.
Ok, specifically, the movies cinematography is what makes it so watchable. It's just some guys with a camera enjoying what they're doing. You can tell they care about what they're filming. Very delicate, intensive, character driven, very bankable. Deeeeelicious! And good for you too.
So what is there not to like about this movie...not a lot. I guess the movie draws thin around the end. A bunch of critics have said that the movie 'just ends', but whatever. It is what it is, and it is great. See it in theatres.

I award The Fighter four out of four squirts.

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