• 2009-08-06
  • By Michael Litvinsky
Director: Dito Montiel

The movie 'Fighting' is a peculiar mix of action and drama, which, unfortunately, cannot satisfy the likes of the fans of both genres. Despite the fact that several very popular, famous and starry cast members agreed to participate in the film, the movie doesn't deliver at all.

The film starts, showing us the life of Shawn MacArthur (rising star Chaning Tatum) 's college drop out, with no place to live and no money, trying to make his way in life by selling fake stuff (MP3-players, CDs, even fake Harry Potter books). But his life changes dramatically, when he meets Harvey (Terrence Howard) 's street speculator and hustler. Harvey sees some potential in Shawn and offers him to take part in the illegal street fights and, in such a manner, to earn a lot of money (5,000 dollars per fight, to start).

The story gets more complicated when Shawn meets a girl named Zulay (and falls in love with her) and his old college rival Evan Hailey, who is also a street fighter. Later, we discover that Shawn has major problems with his father and that he ran out on the family. So, the main character gets caught between his feelings, the will to succeed in life, issues with his father, and the fear to lose everything that he has already gained.

As you can see, the story doesn't take your breath away and very much reminds the viewer of Jean-Claude Van Damm movies, with one difference only 's 'Fighting' is a movie that claims to be called a 'drama.' Still, it can hardly offer the viewer something interesting to watch.

The fighting scenes, which where announced as the main feature of the film, are chaotic and unentertaining. Mostly we see two randomly moving people on the screen, pretending to hit each other, fabulously wheezing, then they get hit. Not to mention, there are only four fight scenes (each not longer than 2 minutes), which is a little bit odd for a movie called 'Fighting.' So if you are a big action movie fan, you will probably leave the theater disappointed.

Still, I regret to say that if you are up for a good dramatic, realistic and non-pretentious movie 'Fighting' is also not the film for you. Montiels' efforts to make it as close to real life as possible weren't crowned with success. Some characters came out hysterical, some absolutely lifeless and some just incredibly stupid. Not to mention that every human being shown in the film has unbelievable problems with finishing their sentences, which is perfectly normal for a guy like Shawn MacArthur (I mean, he earns money for getting hit in the face), but is strange for other, less argumentative, characters.

The predictability of the film does not add interest either. From the very beginning of the film, it is absolutely clear that Shawn will earn a lot of money, beat all the rivals (including the 'archrival' in the end) and, of course, get the girl.

Even the music by Jonathan Elias and David Wittman is more than guessable. A lot of hip-hop beats are very typical for the movies about "the tough life on the streets," despite the fact, that it usually does not combine well with the action on the screen.

So if want to see an action movie, 'Fighting' is not the movie for you, if you want to see a serious film 'Fighting' is not the movie for you. Basically 'Fighting'  is the rare case of a movie with practically nothing good in it. Suffice it to say that the film could only be good for Chaning Tatum and/or Terrence Howard fans, but not much else.

 Now showing in Estonia and Latvia

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