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Chuck Blu-ray Review

Chuck.jpg

“Chuck” is safe, but solid.

After previously being named “The Bleeder,” the clearly superior title changed to the generic “Chuck.” No, the film has nothing to do with the cult TV series. Instead, it’s a boxing biopic about Chuck Wepner whose life was the basis for Rocky Balboa. We learn about the New Jersey boxer’s life, his family troubles, his fight against Ali, his egotism, his ups and downs, and so on. The film also follows a standard biopic model of showing the sports hero’s life falling apart and how he needs to turn his life around and realize what’s important in life.

If the plot sounds familiar that is because it’s all very familiar stuff. With so many boxing and sports biopics out there, it’s hard not to fall victim to the same old tropes which “Chuck” does. Familiarity aside, however, “Chuck” still works. The film never wastes any time due to its quick pace, there’s a clear focus on characterization, a likable Scorsese style voice over narration as well as some truly interesting material including anything to do with “Rocky” and the art imitates life moments.

The real stand-out here is, of course, the all-star cast which contains Liev Schreiber, Ron Perlman, Naomi Watts, Michael Rapaport, Jim Gaffigan and Elisabeth Moss. Veteran actor Liev Schreiber gives one of the best performances of his career as the champion boxer who was known for stamina, bleeding and taking a beating. It’s a different kind of role for Schreiber and you can see he relishes it. Elisabeth Moss (whose career is white hot right now) shines as Chuck’s conflicted wife as does Jim Gaffigan as a pal of Chuck. Naomi Watts is only in the film for a short period of time but she knocks it out of the park here. She continues to be one of the best actresses in the biz.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: Widescreen 1080p. How does it look? For those expecting a glossy looking modern movie, don’t. The film has an intentional grainy 70’s style look to it. With that said, the transfer is still good even though it may not be the type of hi-def quality you have come to expect.

Audio Track: 5.1 DTS-HD MA. How does it sound? A perfectly adequate track.

The lone extra is a 3 1/2 minute featurette titled “All About Chuck” which sells the movie and touches upon the real Chuck Wepner.

Overall Thoughts: “Chuck” doesn’t bring much new to the table, but it’s worth seeking out especially if you love biopics and boxing stories.

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August 3, 2017 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , , , , , ,

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