News: Hugh Jackman: Not just a disgruntled mutant with indestructible claws
Story by Lance Cpl. Kenneth Trotter
IWAKUNI, Japan - I, like many of you, enjoy a good movie.
So I decided to give my take on the movie Real Steel, starring Hugh Jackman, which was released on Blu-ray and DVD at the Post Exchange Jan. 31, and leave it to you, the reader, to decide if this is something worth buying right now, waiting until it becomes cheaper or renting.
Now, before you dismiss this movie as a poor attempt at a live-action version of Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots, let me assure you it actually serves as more.
It’s a possible evolution of what can happen if people want more
violence and carnage in their boxing and mixed martial arts events, but more importantly, it’s an underdog story.
The movie takes place in the year 2020. Massive boxing robots have replaced human fighters, as they are able to dish out more carnage and destruction.
Jackman stars as Charlie Kenton, a down-on-his-luck, former boxing star who missed his shot at main event stardom and is now regulated to performing in the robot-boxing underworld.
From the beginning of the movie, we see Charlie is concerned
with one thing: money.
He makes a habit of betting on fights his robot loses.
After Charlie loses his last match, destroying his robot in the process, he is quickly informed a former flame has died and his son, Max Kenton, played by a quick-lipped Dakota Goyo, is caught in a custody battle.
Charlie isn’t exactly Father of the Year material and quickly comes up with a new scheme to get a new robot.
I won’t ruin the film’s plot by going into too much detail, but by happy chance, Max comes across his own robot, Atom. The robot is essentially a sparring robot, meant to take a lot of damage but never deal any out.
Through a series of hard-fought victories, the duo is able to garner the attention of the reigning World Robot Champion, Zeus.
Zeus, who looks like a sentient version of a black Xbox 360, is similar to his Olympian counterpart in that he reigns supreme over the Robot Boxing League.
The fight which takes place is both long and merciless, as both machines trade blow-for-blow. I won’t spoil the ending for you.
Jackman was satisfactory in his role as the ne’er-do-well, absentee father. It seems a little forced at times, but overall a solid performance.
I had mixed feelings on Goyo’s performance.
His portrayal of an only child who loses his mother, only to meet his biological father was pretty good, but he had a dirty mouth on him. There were a few curse words in there I was surprised he was able to say. But the times are different from when I watched movies geared toward a younger audience.
The special effects were amazing. The robots seemed to be something real, something you could touch, which in fact, the actors could.
You learn about that and other production details in the Blu-ray’s
copious special features, from how they designed the robot fighters to how they hired Sugar Ray Leonard to serve as a boxing consultant.
I give this movie a B- for story, an A for special effects and an A for special features. Overall: B+.