Movie Mom

Movie Mom


Warrior

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sequences of intense martial arts fighting, some language, and thematic material
Profanity:Some strong and crude language, f-word
Nudity/Sex:Mild references, crude joke,
Alcohol/Drugs:Drinking, references to substance abuse
Violence/Scariness:The characters are competitive mixed martial arts fighters, many scenes of brutal matches, some wartime violence, references to domestic abuse
Diversity Issues:Diverse characters
Movie Release Date:September 9, 2011
DVD Release Date:December 20, 2011

Imagine if Rocky, instead of fighting Apollo Creed, got into the ring with another Rocky.  And they were brothers.

I know, I know, but somehow it works in a surprisingly affecting story of the sons of an abusive alcoholic who have not seen each other since they were teenagers and end up fighting each other for a mixed martial arts championship title.

That’s the magic of movies.  Somehow, they can take a story of a welder who does post-modern dance numbers in a Pittsburgh bar and dreams of being a ballerina or cartoon characters are live in old-time Hollywood and feel real-er than real life.  As cheesy as this movie gets, it keeps raising the emotional stakes over and over again until we just tap out and go with it, largely because of full-hearted, powerhouse performances from Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton.

Tommy (Hardy) comes home.  He’s been away a long time.  His father, Paddy (Nick Nolte) is glad to see him, but Tommy says he wants to deal with his father only as a trainer.  He has no interest in catching up or mending their estrangement.  He just has one goal, to win a $5 million mixed martial arts championship.

Brendan (Edgerton) has a good life as a high school science teacher with a family.  His wife says, “I thought we agreed that we weren’t going to raise our children in a house were their father gets beat up for a living.”  But paying for his daughter’s health care has put the family at risk of losing the house.  He needs a lot of money fast and the only way he knows to get it is to win the mixed martial arts championship.  He goes into training with an old friend.  Cue the montages.

The script by writer/director Gavin O’Connor (“Miracle”) is as corny as an “up close and personal” Olympics athlete profiles, but as effective, too.  Every time you think you’ve made up your mind who to root for, it switches around on you, and then switches around again.  The fight scenes are powerful, but in large part due to the emotional weight given to Tommy and Brendan by Hardy and Edgerton.  The final bout, well, its a knock-out.

 

 

 

Parents should know that this movie includes references to substance abuse, domestic abuse, the illness of a child, the sad loss of a parents, and wartime violence, as well as many scenes of brutal mixed martial arts fights.  Characters drink and use some strong language.

Family discussion: Who were you rooting for and why?  How did the choices Brendan and Tommy made about leaving home affect their outlooks and choices as they grew up?

If you like this, try: “Rocky” and a documentary about mixed martial arts, “Fight Life.”



Previous Posts

This Week on USA: "Dig," Set in Jerusalem
I've been looking forward to this since I got a sneak peek last year at Comic-Con: "Dig" premieres on USA March 5, 2015 at 10 pm (9 Central), starring Jason Isaac and Anne Heche in a mystery miniseries filmed in part in Jerusalem. [iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embe

posted 8:00:49am Mar. 03, 2015 | read full post »

Contest: Win a PBS Kids Prize Pack! Peg and Cat, Caillou, and WordWorld!
[gallery link="none" ids="33319,33320,33321"] PBS Kids has three magnificent new DVDs, and I have two prize packs to give away! Peg + Cat: Peg Rocks features seven stories from PBS KIDS’ popular PEG + CAT series. Solving problems is even more AWESOME when music is involved! This new toe-tapp

posted 11:04:14pm Mar. 02, 2015 | read full post »

Trailer: A Royal Night Out
It's like a real-life "Roman Holiday."  According to this film, on the night victory was declared in WWII, Princess Elizabeth (now Queen Elizabeth II) and her sister, Princess Margaret were given permission by their father (the "King's Speech" guy) for an incognito night of celebration.  It looks

posted 6:30:21pm Mar. 02, 2015 | read full post »

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!
[iframe width="420" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/uI1SqfJvvCk?rel=0" frameborder="0"] And don't forget the only live action film written by Dr. Seuss, The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T! [youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dgpfMxYFSmE[/youtube]

posted 11:12:17am Mar. 02, 2015 | read full post »

Trailer: Going Clear -- Documentary About Scientology
HBO will show Alex Gibney's new documentary about Scientology on March 29, 2015. [iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/zllYkNu1sl4?rel=0" frameborder="0"]

posted 8:00:17am Mar. 02, 2015 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.