Monday, June 06, 2011

THE FIGHTER (David O. Russell, 2010)

****½
USA
The world needs another underdog boxing drama roughly as much as it needs Jennifer Aniston to squint her way through another romcom. But David O. Russell here shows how even a thuddingly generic setup can be invigorated into fresh, exciting cinema - into a palpable, credible world of thorny, resonant relationships.

It's all about the details: the hairsprayed trailer chorus of Ward sisters parking/slamming their car into a row of rubbish bins; the half-assed heart shape Amy Adams draws around her phone number on a bar napkin; the repeated buzzer that punctuates a feral and fairly hilarious speakerphone tirade; the astounding apparition of women in a boxing drama encouraged to exhibit elements of personality beyond 'swooning', 'bruised' or 'pleading'.

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