07 October 2011

This Bot Is One To Watch - Real Steel Review


We were fortunate to see an early premiere.  I'm the Merchant Ivory, art house, history buff in the house and I want a good script and actors who know what to do with one when they get it.  My son is the "long week at work Adventure and comedy don't make me think" aficionado, and my grandson is fine as long as it is loud, has crashes and someone speaks in Japanese.  We ALL loved Real Steel.  Look for your cynical film buff button and press “OFF!”.  Gather up everyone in the house whatever their age or gender and cart them all to the theater.  Real Steel is your family feel good about being together, movie of the year.  The rogue learns to be a good guy.  The dejected but sharp kid gets a dad.  The right robot comes out on top and while all of that is happening, you get to cheer, punch the air, and whoop or well up tears in all the appropriate places.

Hugh Jackman gets to act up a storm in a movie that for once he doesn’t have to haul up by its boot straps to make better just because he is in it.  Shawn Levy has given him a vehicle he can ride all the way to the end showing what the actor you knew was there can do with a decent script and cast.  Dakota Goyo is that young talent you keep hoping sticks around for the long haul who is now at the beginning of his career, and the supporting cast (special nod to Anthony Mackie) does what it is supposed to do:  Provide the tension and get out of the way.  

Real Steel may not be a movie for the ages, but in an era of too much over the top noise, empty characters saddled with poor writing, worse acting, and explosions instead of emotions, it is definitely the one movie you want to see this year, the one you will want to add to video collection, and the one that will make you stop for a few pleasurable moments to remember when flicking through the channels in years to come.

Anthony Mackie and Evangeline Lily

Dakota Goyo

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