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The Wrestler - Mickey Rourke's finest hour?


DC
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The plaudits have been coming in thick and fast for The Wrestler, Darren Aronofsky’s award-winning opus about a washed-up 80s superstar wrestler giving it one more go (think Rocky Balboa, but in a wrestling ring) - mostly for the performance of Mickey Rourke in the role, many people say, he was born to play.

 

Well, the first trailer has been released, and it does look like a worthy film (with added Necro Butcher) that doesn't patronise the sport or pretend it's something it's not.

 

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There is the stigma attached to wrestling in the 'mainstream' of 'LOL, DAT'S FAKE' and any film/TV show which has delved into the world of wrestling has usually treated it as such but there has always also been the potential for some really decent stories to be told about wrestling (pre-determined sport or not), particularly of the seedier, darker aspects of it, if filmmakers just had the balls to tell the stories.

 

Anyway, this has been getting a hell of a lot of positive buzz and I've seen some reviewers hail it as one of the films of the year. Glad Rourke is doing it rather than Nic Cage too because Cage is bloody horrendous.

Edited by Naitch
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I think what helps the movie in the mainstram is, like Naitch said, its the story of Rourke's character outside the ring that is the main part of it, if it was being made in a 'wrestling is not all pre-determind' way then it would get a hell of a lot of negative from the mainstream critics

 

This film is getting alot of good feedback because it doesn't go out of its way to put on a front to protect keyfabe etc and shows the realbackstage workings of wrestling and tll the merky story of what its like when the camera's aren't rolling

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Just throwing one random reviewer opinion out there but Empire magazine gave this a 5 star rating and described the heart of the film as 'what do you do when your body won't let you do the only thing you know how to do, and when your entire identity is wrapped up in a career that you have to abandon?' Pretty much professional wrestling in a nutshell, I'd say.

 

Say it's part-Raging Bull and part '...vastly improved version of the last Rocky movie...'

 

They say, plot wise, it isn't hugely original because they could have done the exact same film with an 'ex-con' or a 'retired soldier' than a beatup wrestler. But, then, maybe the wrestling side of it gives it somewhat of an originality I guess. Says it's maybe Rourke's best ever performance yadda yadda yadda, '...emotionally raw with a climax that should draw tears. Yet it's not exactly a pure downer...' blah blah blah and they do draw humour from some of the more absurd parts of wrestling.

 

So, there we go.

 

***** MATCH OF THE YEAR~! Or film. Or whatever.

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Had a look at the official site over at FOX Searchlight's website and heard quite a bit about this film and man, I'm sold - I'm defientely going to check it out, perhaps at the cinemas or on DVD for sure. Also, the lovely Marisa Tomei appears which is even awesome!

 

It should be THE comeback film by Mickey Rourke and Darren Aronofsky (was told his last film was a big flop) and should be in for a good shout at the Oscars which should be a good one with several contenders in the running.

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I doubt it. That's been on the website since late October.

 

If there was a review of the movie, it would be classed as an exclusive and have a great big link in the homepage. That it doesn't suggests to me that Kurtmark is, at best, misinformed.

 

I never said the review was up yet on the website. Hence the fact I said wait until you see it. I have some insider information is all.

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I never said the review was up yet on the website. Hence the fact I said wait until you see it. I have some insider information is all.
Meh.

 

Why don't you post this "insider information" then? The only way it would be a shock (as you described it) is if they turn round and say the film is crap, which I doubt they will do going from what they've said already (although, it will depend on who they get to review it).

 

So, again, why don't you post this information and we'll make up our own mind if it's "shocking" or not.

Edited by DC
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While we wait for Kurtmark's exclusive (most likely arriving after the Total Film website has the review online), I can tell you that both Mickey Rourke and Marisa Tomei have been nominated for a Golden Globe (Best Actor and Best Supporting Actress respectively).

 

That's a very good sign for an Oscar nomination as well.

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  • 5 weeks later...

I'm nearly at the end of the movie, and it's been tremendous. Everything is perfectly toned and acted, and the storyline flows nicely. The wrestling aspect is handled with respect and doesn't paint it negatively - in fact, it shows the comradery of the boys and the respect they have for each other, as well as the sacrifices they make for the business they love. Rourke does an outstanding job - better than you could possibly imagine. This is Heath Ledger's Joker material for people born to make the role work.

 

More importantly though, I've found one more key reason to make it in the radio industry and become a famous personality: to be rich and successful enough to blag my way into meeting Evan-Rachel Wood and drugging her up the aisle (and into bed).

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I've seen a wonderfully good copy, and i can confirm that i probably wont see a better film this year. Rourke is absolutely brilliant, and utterly convincing as the flawed, broken lead, but is backed up terrifically by Marisa Tomei, their relationship is touching, but never schmaltzy, and not once did i complain about cliched dialogue, or the typical American "feel good" nature. Fantastic stuff. It doesnt shy away from controversy either, no doubt about it. If i see no other film this year, im completely happy.
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