Dear The Fighter,
I must begin by saying what a pleasure it was to see you. The excitement and anticipation of what will happen when I hit the play button on my remote control is a very provocative experience. There are always assumptions or expectations that you have of a movie based on what you’ve heard. Whether the comments are positive or negative, there is a bit of doubt in your mind about what you will think of the film when the end credits begin to roll.
One thing is for sure, I was interested in you because of your name. The Fighter. The Academy Awards are a very special occasion. Every person that contributes to the cinematic excellence of a film is recognized. Do you ever wonder why there is never an Oscar for a film’s title? The more I watch the Oscars, the more I reflect on why there is such little, if any, recognition for something as small as the titles of films. I say small, but the title is a huge element of a film’s success. Aside from the previews, commercials, advertisements, and word of mouth promotions, is it not the title of a film that persuades you to watch it?
On one hand you have The Fighter; on the other hand you have Martin Scorsese’s Raging Bull. Both films have stories that revolve around what happens in the center of the ring. More importantly, both films have titles that awake the inner fighter in us all.
We are all fighters. If there is something we want, we should stop at nothing to get it. The problem is, at times we are too lazy to fight over what we take for granted: love. It is impossible to describe how strong love really is. To feel its strength is like taking a knockout punch; not to the head, but to the heart. This is a film that gracefully showcases the bitterness of not receiving love in return, and the greatness of achieving success when there is love in the air.
From beginning to end, there is a steady, but disruptive flow from one side of the spectrum to the other. In the agony of Micky’s defeats, you demonstrated how the power of love carried him from a disheartening part of his life, to the very best. For that, you produced a flawless display of character development. The most important aspect of this cinematic element of film is the chemistry between the characters. So often one comes across films where the lead actors and supporting actors will display their craft and shine. While admiring their work is to be expected, you cannot ignore the even smaller supporting roles and characters.
The dialogue between them is just part of what gives life to the film itself. In this film, each character has something to do with the struggles and achievements of Micky. For him, that means that he is fighting for much more than just personal glory, but for a family, town, and everything that makes up his life.
What I found to be most appealing was your emphasis on the importance of commitment. Early on, there was enough pain and frustration going on in Micky’s life that he could have taken the easy way out and quit boxing. What made the situation even worse is that his family, especially Dicky, was not as committed to his success as he thought. This is where your marvelous execution of character development shined. More importantly, you finished the championship fight standing in the middle of the ring. There are films that conclude with questions that were never answered. However, the chemistry of your characters, effortless flow, and a captivating story met my expectations.
With great awe and admiration,