Film Micrœview #5: The Fighter (2010)
09.28.2013 § Leave a comment
I am open to being inspired by films about simple, brutish, selfish people. But this one did not work on me. There was something about the confrontation between Dicky and Charlene that felt not only so contrived, but also meaningless insofar as it merely the case that they were able to establish between each other that their personal needs were in alignment just so long as they didn’t be mean to each other. Whatever. I was mostly interested in watching this because of O’Russell — while I ❤ Huckabees was cloying, I thought Three Kings struck a wonderful balance between stylization & naturalism, and fun & seriousness, which the other two fall on one side or the other of. I was also amused by wondering how it must have been for O’Russell and Bale to be on set together since they’re both apparently notorious assholes. As a final note, there was one reflexive moment when Micky and Charlene go to see an art film, get pestered by another affectedly more sophisticated couple, and have so little appreciation for the film that their first kiss springs out of rejection of it as it is acknowledged to have been a diversion associated with Micky’s hubris — shit like this is so unsubtle, and I don’t get what O’Russell’s point is here in rejecting artsiness, as if his own stylization (this movie has only two moments where it attempts any sort of cinematographic excess – one goofy shot riding a curly telephone cord in focus with an out-of-focus background over to Melissa Leo smoking an in-focus cigarette, and another that just follows her heels up some stairs a second too long) — and if it has anything to do with Dicky letting another round of storytellers take a pass over the meaning of his life (the first being the film within the film, the real-life HBO doc about his crack addiction) then I don’t really get it either.