The Fighter

13 Jan

Micky Ward (played by Mark Wahlberg) has always wanted to be a fighter, ever since his brother Dicky Eklund (by Christian Bale) put Lowell, Massachusetts “on the map” and made a name for himself when he went a few rounds in the ring with Sugar Ray Leonard. Dicky’s been a supporter and coach of Micky’s ever since. The family’s so proud of Dicky – he’s really made good. Even as an adult, Micky still wants to be a fighter – in fact, he wants to be World Champion … his long time dream. Things haven’t been going so well lately for Dicky though, he’s been in prison and he’s got into crack, which has affected his life and his thinking, but he’s still the same old Dicky underneath – a strong supporter and strong influence for Micky. Although he’s had a string of fights, arranged by his mother Alice (by Melissa Leo), lately Micky’s fortunes have been mixed – the fights have been tough, so he hasn’t had a win yet. His trainer, Micky O’Keefe (by Micky O’Keefe) says Micky should just keep working at it – he’s a great support and mentor. On the good side, Micky’s recently met a really great woman, Charlene (by Amy Adams), who’s helping him with a more positive outlook. Micky’s Dad, George (by Jack McGee) is a great help with that too, so things should really turn around for him soon …

This is the true story of Micky Ward and his fighting career during the 1980’s and 1990’s.The environment in Lowell, Massachusetts is downbeat and a bit “better days are coming”, which to some degree reflects Micky’s life too, but when the strength of family ties and loyalty is tested it shows through in this drama. The characters are marvellous. As Micky’s girlfriend Charlene Fleming, Amy Adams is the best I’ve seen her here and she deserves the Academy (Oscar) and Golden Globe nominations she received for Best Actress. Great, too, is Melissa Leo as Micky’s mother, Alice; From the minute we meet her, she totally dominates every scene she is in – and she totally dominates the family. She was recognised with both the Academy Award (Oscar) and Golden Globe for this performance. Most remarkable though, is Christian Bale. Almost unrecognisable at first, he is superb as the crack-head Dicky Eklund … very good. Mark Wahlberg is strong, as he often is in his natural way, he makes it look easy. He was nominated for a Golden Globe for his performance also. The Oscar and Golden Globe awards are very well deserved. It’s the second attempt I’ve had at watching this movie though. The first time I had real difficulty trying to understand the speaking, so I gave up after about 10 minutes. But the second time I watched it with subtitles, so it was much more user-friendly. Having said that, the reason I had difficulty is because the performances, particularly of Christian Bale and Mark Wahlberg, are so authentic they are a bit difficult to penetrate at first. Their characters are marvellous and very well done. There are cameos by George Foreman and Sugar Ray Leonard also. Along with the awards it received, in the 2011 Academy Awards (Oscars), the movie was nominated for Best Picture, Directing, Film Editing and Best Writing (Original Screenplay). The nominations for Golden Globes were for Best Picture (Drama), Actor, Actress and Director. Well done everyone.

Made in 2012. Directed by David O. Russell

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Posted by on January 13, 2014 in Movies


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