Co-produced by Mark Wahlberg, The Fighter is a 2010 movie based on a true story of struggling boxer Micky Ward (Wahlberg) trying to live up to his older brother, Dicky Eklund (Christian Bale). Against all odds, the two brothers come together to train for a historic title bout that has the power to reunite their fractured family and give them pride. Their explosive relationship threatens to take them both down, but the bond of blood may be their only chance for redemption.
I’m not into boxing, or most other sports, so I did not bother going to the cinema to watch this. However, I did enjoy the story and the acting which is very convincing, even from the supporting cast (including Amy Adams, Melissa Leo and the real Micky Ward).
There are several footage of the actual fights between Eklund and the legendary Sugar Ray Leonard (eg in Massachusetts in 1978 and 1993), which lend credibility to the story. The music – from Bee Gees’ I Started a Joke to the numerous percussive tracks by Led Zeppelin, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and original soundtracks – add to the intended mood and atmosphere. The fights are well choreographed (though I must admit I fast-forwarded some of them because I’m not into boxing), especially those between Ward and his opponents at various venues. The trainers and stunt doubles did a great job, so did the people in charge of the special and visual effects to make the scenes authentic.
This is a story of a family that has been through a lot. It is rather powerful and dramatic – the love between two brothers, the adversity they face, overcoming odds and redemption.