Darren Aronofsky is an interesting one. I liked Pi but was a bit confused by it. I really liked Requiem for a Dream and all of its dirtiness. Whatever you do, don't bother with The Fountain. Aronofsky's 4th feature is damn entertaining. It might not have the most inventive plot, at it's heart it is an old school melodrama. But who cares? Mickey Rourke kicks so much ass. I wish that I hadn't seen any of the previews before seeing this because I loved how Aronofsky didn't show Rourke's face for the first few minutes. The look on the face of the fan getting his autograph when he looks at Rourke up close is quite telling - he's looking at a freakshow.
The wrestling scenes are fascinating to watch. The grocery store scenes are funny as hell. The whole movie is incredibly sad. I loved Rourke's speech in the ring before his big rematch. I loved the last shot. I loved the camaraderie amongst the wrestlers. I loved seeing some of the tricks of the trade. I really like the Springsteen song. The Evan Rachel Wood stuff was a bit overblown but necessary for the story. The Marisa Tomei stuff was good enough but the whole stripper equals wrestler plot line wasn't as subtle as Aronofsky thinks that it is. Between this and another recent movie of hers, is Tomei on a mission to show her breasts on screen as much as possible?
This movie will get at least two Oscar nominations - Rourke and Springsteen and I wouldn't be surprised if it gets more. Perhaps a Best Director nod? Would a Best Picture nomination be too farfetched?
Directed by Darren Aronofsky