Now keep in mind that the two of us generally go see the most messed up movies possible together. The last one we caught was 127 Hours and that was almost too tame.
It's a true story, so I guess there's no spoilers, but although this movie had all the elements to be really dark -- crazy family, drug addiction, infamous freakouters David O. Russell AND Christian Bale -- it was surprisingly feel good and triumphant.
There's nothing wrong with that every once in awhile, but I don't know, the grit, was just missing. Just because you have crack, prison, and bloodsport doesn't mean you have grit.
Oh don't get me wrong, despite wanting more grit, I was cheering and feeling good. I wanted to clap for both of the main characters when they had separately triumphant moments. I'm not a cold-hearted human being.
And if we're talking true stories, a crackhead overcoming an addiction, I'm sorry, but it's a lot more inspiring to me than a King shaking his speech impediment (good movie too, don't get me wrong).
I just prefer when achieving these goals results in complete self-annihilation (hence Black Swan being my front runner still).
Bale's performance makes the film really worth seeing. His physical transformation is so incredible, you completely forget that he's a Hollywood hunk. His portrayal as an addict, well, although I've never known any crackheads, he did a perfect job of capturing exactly what I described last week:
The misconception about junkies is that they're constantly zombies, ready to eat your brains or steal your wallet. However, in moments of clarity, you still can converse with the friends you knew before the drugs. You have to shift through the haze, the fog, and find them in there, but their light is there -- the connection between the two of you.Unfortunately a couple technical issues with the film really caused me to lose my focus and make it hard to get behind it 100%. These had to do with keeping track of the timeline. Apparently this was a 7 year period, but Bale's son in the film DID NOT AGE. So I was extremely thrown off when the movie started in 1993, but then there was a website advertisement on the mat in the big fight scene. However, researching that later, it happened in 2000, so plausible (although I'm fairly sure in 2000 people were still listing "http://" in front of their web promos). There was also a Greek Chorus of sorts of whacked out sisters to provide comic relief during the film, but one looked about 10 years older than the mother.
I know I'm probably weird for letting things like this derail movies for me, but I really think it's the line between good and great. Continuity issues are just sloppy. Uh oh, now David O. Russell is going to come scream at me.
Have you seen The Fighter? What did you think? Am I being overly critical? What's your film of the year so far?