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Published on December 17th, 2010 | by simeon


The Fighter

Based on a true story, The Fighter tells the tale of two brother boxers. Retired and addicted to drugs, Dicky Eklund (Christian Bale) lives life as the town hero while dreaming of a comeback career. Meanwhile his talented younger brother Micky Ward (Mark Wahlberg) is reaching his fighting apex. That is, if he can choose to move past family ties that are holding him from success.

The surprising sibling chemistry of actors Bale and Wahlberg is the successful binding force in the The Fighter. The skill of these two brings relevance to the film for an audience that might otherwise step past a sports story by giving it heart.

Also leading the cast is Amy Adams as Charlene Fleming, a bartender and the love interest of Micky. Charlene threatens to challenge Micky’s already rocky relationship with his family and while this is not Adam’s most impressive role it does display a stretch from her previous body of work.

The supporting cast, consisting of the Micky and Dicky’s sisters and a number of coach and agent figures, adds a much-needed comedic element to a film. Yet it is the small character choices that create emotion in the story, from Micky’s beat-up low budget automobile to the numerous half intelligent one-liners delivered from an increasingly unstable Dicky. This instability combined with gritty shots, constantly moving camera angles, and drab colors provide the audience with a full view of the challenges faced by both brothers in the struggle to survive as boxers.

Unlike the majority of sports stories turned into film The Fighter tackles a much more realistic portrayal of both the sport and the human complexities of the characters involved. The Fighter is more a movie about being a boxer than one about the sport itself, resulting in much of the story occurring outside of the ring. However, there is no denying that The Fighter is a tried and true sports film that overcomes the overplayed story through compelling acting and quality plot.

3.5 out of 5 stars

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