The Fighter

( 15 )

Overview

Mark Wahlberg stars in Paramount Pictures' inspirational docudrama exploring the remarkable rise of Massachusetts-born, junior welterweight title winner "Irish" Micky Ward. A determined pugilist whose career in the ring was shepherded by his loyal half-brother, Dicky Christian Bale -- a hard-living boxer-turned-trainer whose own career in the ring was nearly sent down for the count due to drugs and crime -- perennial underdog Irish Micky rebounded from a disheartening series of defeats to win both the WBU ...
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Overview

Mark Wahlberg stars in Paramount Pictures' inspirational docudrama exploring the remarkable rise of Massachusetts-born, junior welterweight title winner "Irish" Micky Ward. A determined pugilist whose career in the ring was shepherded by his loyal half-brother, Dicky Christian Bale -- a hard-living boxer-turned-trainer whose own career in the ring was nearly sent down for the count due to drugs and crime -- perennial underdog Irish Micky rebounded from a disheartening series of defeats to win both the WBU Intercontinental Lightweight title and the WBU Light Welterweight title thanks to a fierce combination of determination and hard work. David O. Russell directs from a script by 8 Mile's Scott Silver and Paul Attanasio The Bourne Ultimatum.
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Special Features

Commentary by Director David O. Russell; The Warrior's Code: Filming The Fighter; ; Closed Caption
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Jason Buchanan
Everyone loves a good underdog story; they've been a staple of cinema since the very beginning. The perpetual struggle to overcome adversity and strive for greatness is something that we can all relate to, and when told with heart and talent, these tales can offer unusually perceptive insight into the human condition. The world of sports in particular is rife with inspirational stories about athletes who have beaten the odds to become legends. The physical and mental drive needed to succeed on the gridiron, on the court, or in the ring have long provided fodder for ambitious screenwriters, actors, and filmmakers seeking to gain a better understanding of what really drives us to get back up and keep on swinging when it looks for all the world like we've gone down for the count. Inspired by the remarkable true-life story of "Irish" Micky Ward and his unpredictable brother, Dicky Eklund -- a former welterweight whose career was KO'd by crack -- director David O. Russell's intimate sports drama The Fighter succeeds in engaging the viewer on a number of levels thanks to a nuanced screenplay from scribes Scott Silver, Paul Tamasy, and Eric Johnson, and some impressive performances by an immensely talented cast. On July 18, 1978, Lowell, Massachusetts boxer Dicky Eklund Christian Bale cemented his status as "The Pride of Lowell" by knocking down boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard. But while Sugar Ray fell to the canvas that day, volatile Dicky was about to fall even further. Just seven years after that fateful fight, Dicky was too wasted to lace up a pair of gloves -- a tragic victim of the crack epidemic. However, his younger brother, Micky Mark Wahlberg, still had plenty of fight, as well as the self-discipline needed to succeed where his older sibling had failed. Under Dicky's training, Micky made an impressive debut as an amateur boxer in the early '80s, thanks in no small part to his devastating left hook. Still, he was frequently looked down upon by fans, trainers, and other professional boxers as a "stepping stone" fighter -- a professional loser whose only purpose as a pugilist was to prop up boxers who were destined for bigger and better bouts. In the aftermath of a last-minute lineup change that resulted in Micky suffering a brutal defeat, the dejected boxer gradually began to realize that in order to reach his full potential he would need to begin training with true professionals. Not only would that decision strain his relationship with his mother, Alice Melissa Leo, who had always served as his manager, but also his brother Dicky, who would later become the subject of an HBO documentary about crack addiction, in addition to receiving a stiff prison sentence for a host of criminal infractions. Nonetheless, with the support of his father, George Jack McGee; his girlfriend, Charlene Amy Adams; and a new business-savvy manager, Micky would soon be on his way to making boxing history with his legendary trilogy of fights against Canadian boxer Arturo Gatti. Of course, boxing isn't the only sport with a rich history on the silver screen, but with talented actors like Anthony Quinn, Jack Palance, Burt Lancaster, and Robert De Niro having all stepped into the ring at various points in their film careers, it may be the one that consistently draws the biggest talent. Frequently hailed as one of the most gifted actors of his generation, Bale's magnetic performance as motor-mouthed crack-addict Dicky is so compelling that although initial assumptions may lead us to believe "The Fighter" of the film is Micky, it could, in fact, just as well be his less distinguished sibling. The three screenwriters skillfully tell both characters' stories without shortchanging either one. But while Bale sinks his teeth into the meatier role, it's his interaction with Wahlberg that gives the film true heart. The complex balance of sibling rivalry and support is present from the very opening shot, and both actors walk the line between those two extremes with confidence and charisma. And the talent extends to the supporting cast: Leo is captivating as the mother who obviously loves both of her sons, yet always seems to gravitate toward the troubled one a suppressed character trait that boils to the surface in a brilliantly written scene that finds a recently paroled Dicky returning to the gym, and Adams is perfect as the love interest who is bold enough to call out the controlling matriarch and her loyal army of daughters when they threaten to drag Micky down, even if she isn't quite certain how much of their dysfunction she can handle. Behind the camera, Russell always keeps our attention focused in the right place, giving his actors plenty of room to fully inhabit their characters while enhancing all of the major components that make the screenplay such a compelling piece of writing. His directorial choices once again display his flair for breaking with convention some comic relief involving Dicky and his sisters may play as a little too broad for some, and the choice to focus on Micky during a crucial pep talk from Dicky in the final fight is at first confounding until we realize where the scene is going, but they're always made with the characters and story in mind, and help distinguish The Fighter from the glut of other similarly themed films. Russell's decision to shoot the boxing matches in the television style adds a sense of urgency to the bouts that keeps us involved even if we already know the outcome, and makes the film equally compelling for boxing fans and newcomers alike. Stories like the one portrayed in The Fighter help us to realize that, although at times we may feel like all hope is lost, the outcome of a life is never written in stone. For that reason, the film earns a well-deserved spot in the pantheon of inspirational sports underdog films. But while these particular factors ensure that The Fighter works wonderfully within the boundaries of its own particular dramatic subgenre, it's the richly textured performances, thoughtfully balanced screenplay, and assured direction that distinguish it as an all-around great film.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/15/2011
  • UPC: 097363459446
  • Original Release: 2010
  • Rating:

  • Source: Paramount
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Language: English
  • Time: 1:55:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 81,208

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Mark Wahlberg Micky Ward
Christian Bale Dicky Eklund
Amy Adams Charlene Fleming
Melissa Leo Alice Ward
Jack McGee George Ward
Mickey O'Keefe Mickey O'Keefe
Melissa McMeekin "Little Alice" Eklund
Bianca Hunter Cathy "Pork" Eklund
Erica McDermott Cindy "Tar" Eklund
Jill Quigg Donna Eklund Jaynes
Dendrie Allyn Taylor Gail "Red Dog" Eklund
Kate O'Brien Phyllis "Beaver" Eklund
Jenna Lamia Sherri Ward
Frank Renzulli Sal Lanano
Paul Campbell Gary "Boo Boo" Giuffrida
Caitlin Dwyer Kasie Ward
Chanty Sok Karen
Ted Arcidi Lou Gold
Ross Bickell Mike Toma
Sean Malone Wolfie
Jose Antonio Rivera Gilberto Brown, aka Jose
Richard Farrell HBO Cameraman #1
Matthew Muzio HBO Cameraman #2
Steven Barkheimer HBO Producer
Art Ramalho Art Ramalho
Sugar Ray Leonard Sugar Ray Leonard
Jackson Nicoll Little Dicky
Alison Folland Laurie Carroll
Sean Doherty Jimmy (Laurie's Husband)
Sue Costello Becky
Thomas Benton Businessman
Ray Greenhalge Ray Ramalho
Tino Kimly Pran
Epifanio Melendez Carlos Garcia
Jeremiah Kissel Bald Businessman
Sean Eklund Man in Diner
Roeun Chea Chan
Brian Nguyen Brian
Rikki Kleiman Court Clerk
Michael Dell'orto WBU Commissioner
Paul Locke Reporter #1
Kim Carrell Reporter #2
Colin Hammell John Hyland
Dale Place Referee Mickey Vann
Eddie Lee Anderson Referee Joe Cortez
Joseph Lupino Referee Mitch Halpern
Bonnie Aarons Crackhead Bonnie
Walter Driscoll Court Officer
Matt Russell Photo Guy on Street
A. Joseph Denucci Man on Street #1
Richard A. Eklund Man on Street #2
George Michael Ward Man on Street #3
Richard Eklund Jr. Man on Street #4
Jack Greenhalge Man on Street #5
Kevin Paige Man on Street #6
David A. Ramalho Sr. Trainer
Ziad Akl Inmate
Simon Hamlin Movie Patron
Gerald Greenhalge Uncle Jerry
Matthew Russell Running Kid #1
Tommy Eklund Running Kid #2
Rita Mercier Woman on Street #1
Deborah Bolanger Woman on Street #2
Kerry Moore Woman on Street #3
Philip D. Herbert Micky's Cutman
Raul Vera Sanchez Trainer
Jack Lally Neary Trainer
Carlos L. Smith Sugar Ray Leonard Bodyguard
Jerrell Lee Fight Spectator #1
Hugh K. Long Fight Spectator #2
Catherine Lynn Stone Fan
Eric Weinstein Micky's Friend
Bo Cleary Cop
Anthony Molinari Neary
Peter "Sugarfoot" Cunningham Mike "Machine Gun" Mungin
Miguel Espino Alfonso Sanchez
Anthony 'Ace' Thomas Castillo
Brian Christensen Drunk Guy
Jen Weissenberg Drunk Girl
Technical Credits
David O. Russell Director
Darren Aronofsky Executive Producer
Dorothy Aufiero Producer
Laura Ballinger-Gardner Art Director
Judy Becker Production Designer
Mark Bridges Costumes/Costume Designer
Michael Brook Score Composer
Lou DiBella Associate Producer
Keith Dorrington Executive Producer, Original Story
Eric Johnson Executive Producer, Original Story, Screenwriter
Ken Halsband Co-producer
David Hoberman Producer
Sheila Jaffe Casting
Ryan Kavanaugh Producer
Season Kent Musical Direction/Supervision
Todd Lieberman Producer
Pamela Martin Editor
Scott Silver Screenwriter
Paul Tamasy Executive Producer, Original Story, Producer, Screenwriter
Tucker Tooley Executive Producer
Hoyte van Hoytema Cinematographer
Leslie Varrelman Executive Producer
Mark Wahlberg Producer
Happy Walters Musical Direction/Supervision
Jeff G. Waxman Co-producer
Michele Ziegler Asst. Director
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Fighter
1. Scene 1 [7:10]
2. Scene 2 [9:22]
3. Scene 3 [5:57]
4. Scene 4 [6:02]
5. Scene 5 [7:45]
6. Scene 6 [6:55]
7. Scene 7 [8:37]
8. Scene 8 [8:52]
9. Scene 9 [6:19]
10. Scene 10 [3:00]
11. Scene 11 [2:55]
12. Scene 12 [7:38]
13. Scene 13 [4:20]
14. Scene 14 [8:49]
15. Scene 15 [6:19]
16. Scene 16 [10:04]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Fighter
   Play
   Set Up
      Audio Options
         English 5.1 Surround
         Commentary By Director David O. Russell
      Subtitle Options
         English
         Español
         Français
         Subtitle Options: None
   Special Features
      Commentary By Director David O. Russell
      The Warrior Code: Filming The Fighter
      Previews
   Scene Selection
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 15 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 15 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 20, 2011

    Best Movie of 2010

    Best Movie of 2010
    The Fighter is by far one of the best films released in 2010. From the beginning, The Fighter captured my attention and I fell in love with the film. This movie really has something for everyone to like. It's a family drama, love story, comedy, and sports tale all wrapped up into one great film.
    The cast really made the movie. You could tell how dedicated they were to their characters. For instance Christian Bale lost a lot of weight before shooting the film in order to portray drug-addict Dicky so well. Amy Adams was another actor who really portrayed her character well. It's amazing how she can go from a fairy tale princess to a tough foul mouthed woman. Mark Wahlberg was put through intense body building and boxing training before shooting because he refused to use a body double for the fight scenes. The real life Ward brothers had temporarily moved into Wahlberg's home before shooting so that Mark Wahlberg could learn from Micky and copy his speech and mannerisms. This just shows the immense dedication that was put into the film.
    Another great thing was that the movie really captured the raw emotions of the characters. Like many sports movies, The Fighter portrays the story of the underdog athlete. However unlike many underdogs, Micky never once doubts himself. He constantly pushes himself thanks to his girlfriend Charlene. Due to his constant perseverance and drive, Micky is a character you want to root for the entire film. His determination and drive are extremely inspiring to me. He never once thinks of himself as being the loser, in his eyes he is a winner which is something that pushes him to keep fighting despite the circumstances. Micky is also a character that I'm sure people can relate to. Despite all of the factors and odds against him, he wants to become something to be proud of. He does not want to be a nobody, that is going nowhere in life. I feel many people have been in positions where there are people in their life constantly holding them back from reaching their dreams but they keep going and succeed.
    The Fighter takes place in the run down town of Lowell, Massachusetts during the mid 80s. Both Dicky and Micky are considered celebrities of the town and I am sure since the December 2010 release of the film, the town itself is a bit of a celebrity. I love how director David Russell used all real locations in the film. The boxing matches were shot at the Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell, and gym scenes were shot at Arthur Ramalho's West End Gym, one of the real-life facilities where Micky Ward had trained. This is just another aspect of what made the movie great. The Fighter is a true story so it was important to keep things consistent to the real story and I think David Russell did a great job at that.
    The Fighter was nominated for 7 Academy Awards, and took home two of them, Best Supporting Actor and Actress.
    Despite the dark family drama that is present in the film, there is some comedy added to it. This comedic relief can be specifically seen through the use of Micky and Dicky's seven sisters and their hate for Charlene. Also the love story that plays out between Charlene and Micky makes it a movie that also appeals to the female audience as well as the male audience. This is another reason why I say the movie has something for everyone.
    I recommend that everyone should purchase the DVD the Fighter. I enjoyed watching every minute of and I am sure every other viewer will.

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