Monday, January 12, 2009

Movie Review://The Wrestler

I wrote here about the circumstances of how I was to view the movie. It in fact happened and now I can discuss just what in the hell I saw.

Perfection in every sense of the word.

Darren Aronofsky has come to be one of my favorite directors for his vision. Every single frame of his movies Requiem for a Dream and The Fountain are beautiful and very very precise. His vision is one of controlled abstraction. The Wrestler is made by someone else completely. Not only is the look grainy and hand held, for the most part it is claustrophobic. A continuing theme is to film the actors walking into their performances with the camera directly behind their head. It is stifling and fitting.

Mickey Rourke not only put in the performance you've been reading about, he put anything you heard to shame. This guy was supposed to be the next De Niro and drugs and attitude nearly made him the next Danny Bonaduce. The final act of this film is such a testament to the character and Rourke's career. I had goosebumps on the drive home.

Marissa Tomei appeared to give a small little cameo until later in the movie when the focus shifted a little. She was brazen, gutsy and channeling Rourke's need to legitimize herself as an aging actress looking for respected. She plays an aging stripper looking for respect.

The parallels between the two characters in their respective twilight is haunting.

The film is not happy and raises more questions than it answers. You are in an entirely different place at the end of the film than you were at the beginning but maybe not for the better, emotionally.

As a former columnist about wrestling I can say that for the most part it was very real as it showed the "sport." It did not pander.

This is one of my favorite movies of the Oscar season and I hope Rourke can follow up his Golden Globe with a little gold man. It is his to lose.

Grade:// 10 Ram Jam's out of 10

PS://The QA with Marissa Tomei was an absolute abortion. Whoever was the moderator was more impressed with himself than he was the actress. Marissa looked like she forgot she was supposed to be there and was on her way somewhere else.

PSS://Note to the marketing people for a movie entitled "The Wrestler" and in which your lead actress is naked 85% of the time: Wrestling fans are goons, don't give them a venue to talk to an actress that they just saw play a stripper. It got uncomfortable quick.

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