New Release of the Week: The Fighter

Mark Wahlberg is Mickey Ward, “The Fighter” of the title in this true-life late-career comeback story. The younger half-brother of could-have-been contender Dicky Eklund (Christian Bale), the man who once knocked down Sugar Ray Leonard and is now wasting away as twitchy crack addict lost in fantasies of his own comeback, Mickey is the modest, hard-working professional in a family lost in delusions of Dicky’s grandeur.

That’s pretty much Wahlberg’s place in the film as well, playing quiet resilience and tough endurance in the face of his mother Alice’s (Melissa Leo) big talk and reckless mismanagement of his career, which she treats like a temporary meal ticket to be cashed in on short-term fights while waiting for Dicky to get his act together and pretending that he’s not a screwed-up junkie on the road to self-destruction.

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Author: seanax

I write the weekly newspaper column Stream On Demand and the companion website ( I'm a contributing writer for Turner Classic Movies Online, Keyframe, Independent Lens, and Cinephiled, and the editor of Parallax View ( I've written for The Seattle Post-Intelligencer, The Seattle Weekly,, Senses of Cinema, Asian Cult Cinema, and Psychotronic Video, among other publications, and I am a contributing editor to Parallax View. I currently live and work in Seattle, Washington, with my two cats, Hammet and Chandler.

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