Rated: R for language, sexuality/nudity and some accident images. Reviewed by: Dave Release date: November 18, 2016 Released by: Open Road Films
Bleed For This, is based on the life story of Providence, RI native, and boxing champion Vinny Pazienza. Using the tried and true Hollywood formula of a boxer railing against all odds and eventually triumphant in the end, Bleed reads like 2016's (Hands of Stone), another rags to riches story which is dated and anachronistic. This also makes the movie feel really forced and contrived. Miles Teller (Whiplash) is admirable as Pazienza, and Aaron Eckhart is passionate in his portrayal of trainer Kevin Rooney. What's missing is the basic fact that it's the "same old story" with different names and locations.
Give me Robert DeNiro as Jack LaMotta in Raging Bull (1980), or Russell Crowe as James Braddock in Cinderella Man (2005). It's all been said before, in far superior films. Heck, just give me Rocky 1977. It was fictional, but at least it was entertaining.
The boxing genre is knocking itself out trying to re-invent the wheel. Yet, the outcome is always pretty much the same. There is usually a winner and a loser at the end of the fight, with another rematch coming soon. No one would ever watch a boxing film that ends in a draw, or would they? Only time will tell, another batch of mediocre boxing films is right around the corner.
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