|Posted by Jonathan Leithold-Patt on December 24, 2010 at 4:19 PM|
THE FIGHTER ***1/2
David O. Russell
IDEA: The true story of "Irish" Micky Ward and his vociferous family, who threaten both Micky's career and his well-being.
BLURB: The Fighter is a jolt of assiduous energy traveling at 10,000 volts, and director David O. Russell – along with a tight, gritty script – are the juiced sparkplugs. This film is never less than completely engrossing, demanding your attention with every scene, a fairly simple story of family dysfunction and underdog sports success becoming a rustling, raging livewire of character interplay at the hands of some terrific actors. And they could not possibly be any better; the ensemble that makes up the picture is practically spilling off the frame, and every single one of them adds to the broiling melting pot of the story’s volatile family dynamics. Up front is an amazing, frightening Christian Bale, whose wasted, jerky frame conveys an off-center goofiness painfully upset by an uncontrollable drug addiction. Melissa Leo, the mother, is an equally fiery personality who wields both her love and her dissatisfaction like spiked counterattacks. Along with a sweetly dangerous Amy Adams, an effectively muted Mark Wahlberg, and numerous others, The Fighter resolutely creates a singular time and place running over with heated, yet oddly infectious, life.