The Fighter: A Powerful True Story about Mickey Ward's Rise to Boxing Champion
Inspirational families have always said keep your best interests at heart, but in reality that is not always true. David O. Russell's "The Fighter" presents a true story about Mickey Ward, a boxer trying to make a name for himself while struggling against his family both inside and out of the ring. Taking place in Lowell, Massachusetts during the 90's, two brothers, Mickey Ward (Mark Wahlberg) and Dicky Ecklund (Christian Bale), are in hopes of becoming boxing champions. Although Dicky nearly hits home after knocking down Sugar Ray Leonard, his hopeful career path was forgotten, and he later became a crack addict.
Wahlberg did his part in beefing up for the role in order to portray a heavy weight boxer. However, Christian Bale the real star of the movie outshines Wahlberg's character.
Bale's complete transformation into Dicky Ecklund is phenomenal. To play Dicky he had to lose a massive amount of weight and thin his hair.
With a title like "The Fighter," it is expected that there would be a standard sports underdog story. However, the story is more about the struggles outside of the ring; dealing with Dicky's addiction, and the constant drilling from their mother (Melissa Leo) about how important family is.
What's most surprising is that the boxing sequences aren't the main focus of the film, but they are interestingly shot. Every big fight is filmed to look like they are being broadcasted on HBO adding a rough, real touch with sound effects so genuine, it adds to the realism of the fights.
Once and a while a sports movie is truly well made and deserves recognition, "The Fighter" is one of those films which we can expect to see hopeful academy nominations in the future.