Last Saturday the bf and I landed at the movies after having been out all day. We hadn't checked the show times beforehand (a circumstance alien to my unspontaneous soul) and were at the mercy of whatever was playing. We turned out to be just in time for The Fighter, which we were both interested in seeing. (The bf breathed a sigh of relief when I announced that we were an hour too early for No Strings Attached.)
You probably know all about the plot of The Fighter because it's been out a while and is nominated for several Academy Awards. America loves an underdog, and this based-on-a-true-story account of Micky Ward (Mark Wahlberg), a working class down-on-his-luck boxer weighed down by his overbearing manager mother (Melissa Leo), once-legendary-boxer-turned crack-addict brother (Christian Bale), and his own perceived limitations, delivers. Enter the love of a good woman (Amy Adams), and Micky's world explodes, forcing him to question his family and himself, ultimately reconciling what's best about each to triumph over his most fearsome opponents.
The movie was dark and gritty, qualities that usually put me ill at ease. This time was no different, and at first I didn't like it. But by the second half, I'd changed my mind. It's a hard-hearted viewer who doesn't end up rooting for Micky.
Given my preference for lighter fare, I don't see too many Oscar-nominated movies and end up feeling left out watching the big ceremony. So, I was glad to have witnessed Melissa Leo's and Christian Bale's performances. (They're favored to win for Best Supporting Actress and Best Supporting Actor, respectively.) Both were outstanding, Melissa Leo as a chain-smoking, hard-bitten lioness viciously protective of her cubs, and Christian Bale as a tortured, talented, and desperate fallen hero.
Maybe I should watch gritty movies more often.