Bros take Rocky road
IN THE brutally compelling drama Warrior, the booming mixed martial arts ( MMA) scene finally gets its very own Rocky.
In what some fans might well consider a bargain, Warrior actually offers two rousing underdog tales for the price of one.
By film’s end, a pair of down- and- outers will participate in a televised smackdown at an Atlantic City enormo- dome for a survivortakes- all- purse of $ 5 million.
Oh and did I mention the strapping scrappers are brothers? Well now you know.
Very craftily acted and staged for what is essentially a formula flick, Warrior plays out in two distinct halves.
First up, we follow estranged siblings Brendan ( Joel Edgerton, pictured) and Tommy Conlan ( Tom Hardy) as they revive their dormant MMA skills after a long time out of the ring and an even longer period out of contact with each other.
The responsibility of providing for a family meant Brendan left the sport for secure tenure as a schoolteacher. Tommy did time as a soldier in Iraq. They fell out when their home life disintegrated in their younger days.
Brendan has some unconventional coaching from a new- agey mentor ( Frank Grillo). Tommy joins forces with his muchdespised dad Paddy ( Nick Nolte).
Though you could probably take or leave the first half, you will be glued to your seat once the big tournament starts.
The extended fight scenes – and I’m not kidding when I call then extended – are thump- tastically convincing, and far more involving than many MMA newbies could feasibly expect.