Back in '77, Rocky won in the Academy Award ring against some classic heavyweights - and so with The Fighter being billed as ‘the greatest boxing movie since Rocky’ (completely forgetting Raging Bull in the process), there is pressure on David O. Russell’s effort. The truth is that The Fighter is really great, a true 'performance' film. This didn’t prevent O. Russell from securing an Oscar nomination for his deft direction – arguably, in what should have been Chris Nolan’s nomination – but somehow did prevent Mark Wahlberg, the film’s heart, from getting noticed in the Best Actor category. With Christian Bale nominated (and a shoo in), aswell as former-nominees Melissa Leo and Amy Adams, The Fighter will definitely scoop up some awards
Would it have been nominated before the 10-nomination rule?
Hell yeah, the Academy loves a clichéd rags-to-riches story like this. That isn’t to detract from the film; it’s one of the more charming efforts on this year's list and fully deserves its nomination. It’s chance here is better than most. Like Micky Ward himself, this is the underdog, albeit an obvious one.
Rating out of 5: ●●●●●
Chances out of 5: ●●●●●