When troubled Iraq war veteran Tommy (Tom Hardy) decides to enter a mixed martial arts fighting tournament he can think of no-one better than his former alcoholic Dad (Nick Nolte) who he hasn’t seen for over ten years to train him. So begins an uneasy alliance as the duo prepare for battle, but unbeknown to them another family member has also decided to enter.
Joel Edgerton is Brendan, Tommy’s brother. Brendan makes a living as a high school physics teacher but runs into financial difficulties that force him to return to the fight game.
The $5million prize money has attracted the world’s top fighters including the legendary Russian athlete Koba, played by real life pro-wrestler Kurt Angle.
Can either of the brother’s beat their formidable opponents and prevail? You’ll have to see it to find out but make sure you avoid the trailer at all costs as it reveals the finale.
This could easily have turned into one long training montage movie but thankfully it concentrates on the background of the three main characters so that when the tournament begins the fights carry a lot of emotional weight.
Hardy and Nolte are excellent as the estranged Father & Son but Joel Edgerton’s performance as the family man turned fighter steals the show. This is Rocky for the MMA generation and it’s the best sports film I have seen in a long time.
Ric’s rating: 84%
I've been debating about seeing this movie as I normally don't like movies about boxers or fighters, unless there are some unique dramatic elements and the fighting is not the focal point. Like Daniel Day Lewis' The Boxer. I do enjoy both Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton, though, and this is an excellent review so I may give this one a go.ReplyDelete
I've heard the acting was really good in this one.ReplyDelete
I think Tom Hardy is one of the best actors from the UK - want to watch this!ReplyDelete
You should check it out Melissa, it isn't overly violent.ReplyDelete
Alex, yes top notch acting.
I think you'd enjoy it Michael. Hardy is good but I'd say Edgerton is better in this.
This was one of the better movies of 2011! The whole cast was excellent.ReplyDelete
I've been told by some fellows from my gym that is somewhat perpetuates the Royce-Gracie myth that Jiu-Jitsu will get you through the worst beatings. Still I'll probably watch it and make my own opinion. It can't be worse than NEVER BACK DOWN, can it?ReplyDelete
Thanks Ty, I agree.ReplyDelete
Ha ha, I haven't seen Never Back Down Ben so I can't comment on that but I liked the use of jiu-jitsu in the film and I'm a big fan of Royce.
Really? This movie was good? COOL. My husband's been wanting to see it and I was on the fence, but now can I let him have his pick without him realizing I actually want to see it, too. Which means it's my pick the next time.ReplyDelete
Wow, amazing how I can turn your perfectly good review post into something about me. :P
Nicely done Jennifer !ReplyDelete
I can tell you that my other half really enjoyed this too and I'm lucky that she normally goes along with what I pick.