Friday, January 9, 2009

Fighting movie trailer - A Guide To Recognizing Your Fists

Lloyd Dobler was so right when he said kickboxing was the "sport of the future". At least partially.

I'm a pretty big mixed martial arts fan, my initial interest materializing as a child when I started learning Shotokan karate and watching first pro wrestling, then UFC when my friend Mark came to me with some VHS tapes of the first UFC events which featured our favorite at the time, Ken Shamrock.

Currently I favor guys like Lyoto Machida (who has a highly anticipated matchup later this month against Thiago Silva) and Cung Le (who is featured in this trailer, he's the Asian fighter in Tatum's first underground fight) who started with more traditional martial arts and branched into other facets.

With Never Back Down, Summitt Entertainment tried to branch into a real theatrically released film involving mixed martial arts, and this spring we have Fighting (what a boring title) which chronicles Tatum's character Sean Arthur as he battles poverty by getting involved in underground fights.

Cinematically it makes sense to seduce the audience into thinking that there's this dangerous and alluring underground system, a la Fast and the Furious. The story is typical, but with the twist being that the combat is something relatively newer.

The director, Dito Montiel, should be able to get some great footage of New York, as he is a native and used to be in a NY hardcore outfit. The other great thing it has going for it was Montiel directed A Guide To Recognizing Your Saints, also with Tatum, which was a terrific little slice of Queens way back when and had a great natural feel.

Strictly speaking from the perspective of say, someone who wants MMA to succeed in the mainstream as a legit sport (which it already is, and really is breaking ground), a film like this probably will not further that cause. Now technically, New York State has not sanctioned mixed martial arts, so the fact that the film revolves around underground fights makes sense. But the corruption and lack of rules and organization which the sport has managed to stay away from kind of doesn't bode well for someone coming in knowing nothing about MMA, if they don't like it, they might get the wrong impression. David Mamet's Redbelt took a story and used it within a legit fight circuit, which presented the idea of MMA as a sport rather than something for thugs to get into.

The movie had been filming all over the city last year, including some massive staging with some kick ass fake rain.

However, I'm sure Fighting will be entertaining. It's like Step Up (also with Tatum), but with fight fights, not dance fights.

For more on Fighting, IMDb it here. Or go to the official site. It releases on April 24th from Rogue Pictures.

No comments: