Mickey Rourke scores the role of his life with the story of a profesional wrestler who renounces to admit that his golden years are away.
Hollywood loves the stories of resurrection. Mickey Rourke was lost for cinema industry for many fans and producers, but Darren Aronofsky gave him a chance of redemption in a role that was suiting him like a glove, and he did not waste it. Actually, Rourke´s performance is so strong and so linked to his real life that literally erases everything else in the movie, although Marisa Tomei acts like a great counterpart as the mature (but still sexy) stripper attached to him.
I was seriously disappointed with Rourke not winning the Academy Award for best actor, but well, Hollywood is like that, a land full of paradoxes. Awarded or not awarded, certainly this The Wrestler is one of the best movies done in 2008 and released in DVD in 2009. For many people of my generations, it will be a wink to those matches of WWF that we loved when we were children, but although the movie is about a wrestler, is not only about wrestling. It is about redemption, pride, family bounds, hypocrisy… the layers are endless and compose a delicious onion to be tasted by the spectator.
Aronofsky confirms once more that with small budgets (revisit for example his deliciously chaotic Pi), he is still one of the most interesting and exciting directors nowadays, and Rourke just nails it here. Do not miss it!
The best: that Rourke seems to have been born for this role. And seeing Marisa Tomei giving a lap dance…
The worst: that he was not awarded as best actor in the Oscars as he deserved it.
The detail: in the scene where Rourke cuts his forehead with a razor, he really does it, imitating a common practice of wrestlers on the ring.