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movie thoughts: Real Steel

January 11, 2012 3 comments

This one.

I think this is the type of movie in which there is so much that could possibly go wrong, you’re almost intrigued to how much of a train wreck it could be. And I’ll admit that the premise, I was totally on the fence about (I mean, boxing transformers-esque robots? seriously?) but I’m willing to give it a shot, and I’m so glad I did.

The premise of Real Steel is that basically in the near future, people box with robots, and Charlie Kenton is one of the people who participate in the ‘sport’. One day he finds out his ex has died and he has an 11 year old kid to take care of for the summer, and they bond over the sport. It’s not exactly predictable but not exactly super-original either (minus the boxing robots, that is).

But I feel that’s the crux of it, and the people who made the movie didn’t lose sight of it. It was a movie about father and son, and the idea of redemption and determination; you throw in some guts and a really sympathetic underdog story, and it’s like you’ve it gold. I thought the heart of the story and the tentative to dependable relationship between Charlie and his son, Max is what kept this movie from going overboard. The pacing was also something I really liked, because you’re always afraid that the movie will rely too much on fight scenes and either bore you to death or cringe you to death in between. I’m happy to say that I found that these more developmental parts of the plot did neither, and really carried the movie along without it feeling as if the pace was slowing down.

But of course, you’re probably interested about the fight scenes, and I’ll say– I was impressed. And I’m also extremely impressed that it wasn’t overdone (OHEY THERE MICHAEL BAY AND TRANSFORMERS 3) and while it served as an exciting backdrop, it wasn’t overwhelming and was indeed entertaining for me. Some of the matches I was genuinely excited and kind of on the edge of my seat, so to say. I was lulled into this futuristic world easily and I think I avoided the whole “wtf this could never happen, *eyeroll*” possibility, which definitely added to my enjoyment.

There were definitely a few weak parts– the romance factor comes to mind, mostly because it feels as if it was just thrown in there for good measure because “hm, there should be a romance”.

Okay, now here’s a make or break factor (YES, it is a make-or-break): the child actor. Max (Dakota Goyo). Make? Uhm… yeah. I’ll give it to him, but just barely. Because he had some awesome scenes, but he also had some *facepalm* scenes and when finding out the net-win, it was on the positive side… so yay! And I should add I’m kind of unfairly mean and judgemental about young actors because they really can ruin a movie with shitty acting, and I really can’t stand them sometimes. Max does a dance entrance with the robot Atom and yes, it was cheeky and lame but kind of cute.

Maybe, just maybe you’re a female and you want a different make or break factor: Hugh Jackman. More specifically: his arms. Damn, there are some very fine shots in there ๐Ÿ˜‰

Overall: B+

In a scribble: Combining the underdog story and a touching father and son relationship extremely well, Real Steel really is a fast paced, entertaining movie that will please a little part of everyone.