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The Fighter Blu-ray Review

A great ensemble cast makes “The Fighter” a winner.

Going into “The Fighter,” I wondered if there were any stories left to tell in the boxing world as cinema has sort of exhausted the boxing film genre. Thankfully, I was proven wrong with this engrossing boxing/family drama based on the real life story of boxer Micky Ward and his dysfunctional, but loving family.

While I could go into more detail about the story, I’d rather not. I went into “The Fighter” cold only knowing that the film boasted some incredible performances and, to me, that’s the best way to go into the film. If I had to describe “The Fighter,” I would simply say that it’s a surprising, tragic, moving, uplifting story that is about family at its heart. Granted, it’s a very dysfunctional, “Jerry Springer Show “esque family, but that’s what makes the movie so compelling. It wouldn’t be interesting if the family was normal.

Story aside, however, it’s the film’s performances that make this movie shine. By now, I’m sure you’ve all heard about Christian Bale’s powerhouse performance, and to tell you the truth, it’s worhy of all the hype. Bale completely transforms himself into Micky’s drug addicted brother Dicky Eklund and it’a astonishing to watch. Not to be forgotten are the performances by co-stars Mark Wahlberg, Amy Adams, and Melissa Leo. While Wahlberg has had his ups and downs, he can give great performances under the tutelage of a great director like David O. Russell. In his role as Micky Ward, Wahlberg is very much the heart of the film and he gives a superb understated performance as a conflicted boxer. As for Amy Adams, she delivers another award worthy performance as she plays a different type of character than usual. To say Adams has range is an understatement. Last, but not least there is Melissa Leo who seems to have a knack for turning into characters and being completely unrecognizable as them. Her role as the controlling, chain-smoking mother also won her an Academy Award and it’s not hard to see why.

Summary: I could go on praising “The Fighter,” but instead, I’ll just recommend that you see it as soon as possible. Highly recommended.

Video/Audio:

The widescreen 1080p picture quality is crystal. You can’t ask for a better transfer for this film.

The 5.1 DTS-HD audio track is lively to say the least. From the dialogue and music to the fights in the ring and the sounds of Lowell, this track packs a punch.

Extras:
* DVD/Digital copy.
* 16 deleted scenes including more Dicky interviews. Optional commentary by David O. Russell is included.
* “The Fighter” theatrical trailer.
* “Keeping The Faith”- This fascinating featurette is about the real Micky and Dicky. Interviews with their real family is included.
* “The Warrior’s Code: Filming The Fighter”- A great making of featurette that includes stories about how the film got made and the real Micky and Dicky. Behind-the-scenes clips are also included here.

* A dull commentary by David O. Russell. He’s a great filmmaker, but he’s not a great commentator. If you want stories about the film and the real Micky and Dicky, watch the above featurettes instead.

March 24, 2011 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , , , ,

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