Saturday, 18 February 2012
DVD REVIEW: WARRIOR
Tap into this one..
140 Minutes. Starring: Tom Hardy, Joel Edgerton, Jennifer Morrison, Frank Grillo & Nick Nolte. Director: Gavin O'Connor. Screenplay: Gavin O'Connor, Cliff Dorfman & Anthony Tambakis
Let's get it on! Think of all the clichés you want. 'It will leave you floored', 'it roles with the punches', 'it will take the wind out of you'. This is all true but this film is anything but a cliché. It's about time the worlds fasting growing sport of Mixed Martial Arts got it's due in a movie. Think that Boxing is the only form of fighting that can be given romanticism and drama in a Hollywood picture? Well think again. Rocky couldn't go three rounds and a balboa with this true to it's name 'Warrior'. This picture shows this setting makes for a perfect 'Raging Bull' meets 'Fearless' drama as fists, martial arts and the true art of real fighting are mixed. Forgive the cliché's but in the still Autumn season this film is a runaway, surprise, classic hit that will make you realise why you love movies as it pins you down to the edge of your seat. Take a minute.
Get off the ropes and don't sit on the fence, with all hype being directed at the wrong movies at the moment this fighter is the prize pick that should make it to Oscar season like Mark Wahlberg and Christian Bale's time in the ring. This is much more dramatic, grittier and brutal to boot, flip, punch and kick too. You have to understand if you took one look at this writer you would know he isn't a fan of MMA and the UFC, but after this movie it's more than garnered his attention and respect. This movie has just done a hell of a lot for this sport. Like 'Any Given Sunday' did for football or Kevin Costner did for baseball.
Gavin O'Connor sets the scene perfectly in the gutter-poet Springsteen, make or break Atlantic City which is a long way and far cry of the big lights, slots and hopes of Vegas. This picture cashes in on it's beautifully brutal background. The film also makes the most of current times and problems, as the story of two brothers fighting each other in and outside their discipline isn't the only battle made. The war on young soldiers minds and financial crisis on individuals home life is also take to task and script with thoughtful writing and tactful direction. The convincing compassion also feels out alcohol addiction and faith in family versus faith in our father. This sip of true life is heaven sent. It all connects like the characters with every powerful blow.
Submit. This is no stop-gap between Christopher Nolan blockbusters. Following his charismatic, scene-stealing performance in 'Inception', Tom Hardy is doing more than just bulking up for Bane in 'The Dark Knight Rises' in this film. He's showing his incredible versatility, one that holds the belt like no other. Hardy even makes you forget he's also hitting big this week in the hard drama 'Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy'. This is his time and this is his movie. Think 'Inception' co-star Leonardo DiCaprio plays the conflicted man well? Hardy will make you believe every dark emotion. This film is no weight shift segue, it's his moment.
The same can be said for on-screen brother Joel Edgerton and father Nick Nolte, the respective up and coming star and legendary veteran also pack an emotional punch in dramatic performances with brutal honesty, displaying all the unrelenting strength and pathetic weakness of some human emotions in a right and just way. All actors bring their A game and everything they have as even the slightest expression reveals more plot points then simple exposition ever could. These complicated techniques expose just how great this film really is. The fights in this movie are epic even before an one steps in a ring, and when they finally do the fight scenes are as choreographed as brilliant as 'The Fighter' or 'Ali', seconds out to none. With a real emotionally thrilling climax that does the rest of this heart and soul picture justice even the toughest looking grown man in the cinema was shedding a few man tears.
TIM DAVID HARVEY.