Call out time: I have a very good friend who has a thing for Mark Wahlberg. And by thing, I mean serious, unwavering obsession with him and everything he has ever done. Case in point: we had this hanging up in our apartment senior year. Seriously though? Not complaining.
Anyways, when promos for The Fighter started, I knew I had to see it with her, to have the very best Mark Wahlberg experience possible. So we dragged the boyfriends along (as this is VERY boy-friendly movie), and off we were to see what Sports Illustrated is calling one of the best sports movies ever.
Set in Lowell, MA, The Fighter follows boxer Mickey Ward’s journey to the welterweight title, despite his dysfunctional family and many roadblocks along the way.
The Fighter has received very positive reviews, with some serious amount of buzz around the performances in the movie. Christian Bale is the heavy favorite to take home the supporting actor Oscar, and after seeing the movie, I have to agree. His portrayal of Mickey’s cracked up half brother Dickie is so convincing. I think people (or me, whatever) forget what a serious actor Christian is. I always go to Batman when I think of him, in which he’s obviously a smoking hot Bruce Wayne, but it’s not really the acting job of a lifetime. However, Bale is known for his extensive bodily transformations and tendency to become his character in every way:
Along with Bale, Amy Adams and Melissa Leo (as Ward’s girlfriend and mother, respectively) have also been on most critics’ list of likely nominees for best supporting actress. Mark Wahlberg’s performance, though not as dramatic as Bale’s, is so understated and enormously effective. His portrayal of Mickey is really one of a fighter, who’s been knocked down by life so many times, by so many things—literally, by fighting, his family, his coaches, everything in his life seemed to conspire to keep him down, until he rose to the top unexpectedly. As has been widely reported, this was sort of a pet project for Wahlberg—he’s been training for this role since 2005, and it’s taken that long for the film to get made. I think it was this long road to even get the film made that really reflects Mickey’s struggles, and this shines through in Wahlberg’s portrayal.
Needless to say, I loved The Fighter (and so did Ashley and the boyfriends). I’ll be shocked if Christian Bale doesn’t walk away with the Oscar in his category, and I bet Wahlberg and Leo get at least nominated in their respective categories.
Anyone else think Bale’s got supporting actor on lock? What are the chances Amy Adams squeezes into an already-crowded field of supporting actress nominees? I think when push comes to shove, Melissa Leo gets it, but we’ll see.
In other news: we’ve cracked the 50 day mark until the awards ceremony (49 days, or 7 weeks exactly from tonight!) Next stop: the announcement of nominees, coming up on 1/25!