I am so sick and fricking tired of Boston movies and Boston accents and Boston anything. Yet … I love great movies and so many of these recent movies have been fantastic. The Fighter is another to add to the list but, at least, this time it isn’t about cops and robbers.
Due to his perceived prickness and the very large shadow of Heath Ledger, Christian Bale is rarely included as one of the best actors in their prime today. That may begin to change after The Fighter. This is another complete transformation that he goes through for a character. I am convinced that if a director even jokes that maybe Christian should try heroin for a role, 2 weeks later Bale will be outside a methadone clinic trying to kick the habit. He is an absolute skeleton with just the right amount of junkie idiosyncrasies. This is the best performance of his career.
And I am very thankful for that, because Mark Wahlberg is the ultimate serviceable actor. All I ever see is Mark Wahlberg, no matter the character he is portraying. This is slightly better than most because he gets to speak in his natural accent in a world he is comfortable in. Still, its nice to have Bale do all the heavy lifting while Mark just continues moving the story along. When its not Christian Bale, its Amy Adams diving into that accent and those clothes with reckless abandon. She is just a phenomenal actress who is willing to do whatever is necessary for a role. Even if that means whoring up the clothes and grating my brain with that accent.
Thankfully I saw The Fighter before all the hype telling me that this is the greatest boxing movie ever made. Because it definitely is not. It is a fantastic movie with no real flaws but the actual boxing scenes are on par with all the other boxing scenes I’ve ever seen. I honestly don’t understand how anyone can think this is so much more realistic than other boxing movies. Who cares! Its a movie! Do you think Mickey’s crazy white trash sisters all spoke in rhythm like that in real life? I hope they did...
Why would you tell the story of Mickey Ward and not include the trilogy of fights with Arturo Gatti? It was fun to see his rise from obscurity and bad family management but it became famous off his wars with Gatti. That would have been the boxing action that would have been amazing to see portrayed on the big screen. Hey, there can always be The Fighter 2: Still Fighting.
The Fighter was a helluvalot better than I expected it to be. That could be completely based on the work of Christian Bale but whatever the reason it was a great movie. I'm not gonna question good stuff when good stuff happens.
9 out of 10