Boxer “Irish” Micky Ward’s (Wahlberg) unlikely road to the world light welterweight title. His Rocky-like rise was shepherded by half-brother Dicky (Bale), a boxer-turned-trainer who rebounded in life after nearly being KO’d by drugs and crime.
We get to know the brothers and see how close they are as a family, Mickey always idolised Dicky and listened to him about boxing. Dicky trained his brother from a very young age. This story is not just about Mickey trying to make it as a boxer but about Dicky’s fall from grace. He could have been a brilliant boxer and really made it, but he found drugs instead and that was to be his downfall.
We are taken on that journey and how Dicky being locked up in prison actually helps Mickey regain his focus and realise how much he wants to make it in boxing. But it wasn’t just Dicky who was helping yet hindering Mickey’s chances, his mother Alice played a massive part too. She always seemed to favour Dicky out of her two sons.
This was one of those films that I was always going to enjoy. I love sport and love boxing and boxing movies just seem to work. The passion and dedication that the fighter puts in to try and make it really does strike something with me. It’s special to want to be the best and achieve everything you have ever wanted.
We see Micky reevaluate his life and realize that he does not want to end up like Dicky and wants to give his boxing career a real shot. This involves changing his manager and trainer from his mother and brother. Obviously this does not go down well at all, but something he must do in order to really go for it.
Sport is a passion and something that you cannot switch off to matter how hard you try. Even when Dicky is at the height of his drug addiction he still loves boxing and has the opinion that he is going to make his come back one day soon. Micky while saying that he is done being a fighter, doesn’t mean it for very long when he realises that it is his life. He cannot be without boxing as it is so much apart of who he is.
I found this film to really have everything that the Oscars cries out for, it really did have the Oscar feel throughout. It has all different relationships which have ups and downs. The brother relationship between Dicky and Micky. Mother/Son, Father/son, Brother/sister and man/woman. Everyone around Micky feels that they have to fight as well, but that is not the case.
I thought Christian Bale was unreal as Dicky, so off the wall and totally crazy. His physical appearance is so striking as soon as you begin to watch the film. Mark Wahlberg was just brilliant as well, best type of role for him having to be so serious. Melissa Leo has deserved all the plaudits she has received for being the eccentric Alice. Amy Adams was good, but I thought she would be better with all the critical acclaim she has been receiving.
I will be routing for this film on Oscar night!!!