While the movie "The Fighter" by Mark Wahlberg was great, there is nothing in comparison to Southpaw.
JAKE GYLLENHAAL IS ON A ROLL
He has been very good in his previous movies like Nightcrawler, Enemy and Prisoners. Definitely one of those actors that deserve to win some award. Although it hasn't materialize, his continuous impressive role seems to suggest the awards will come some day. Maybe for Southpaw?
Well, firstly, it was impressive to see his physics, especially this was a movie done after his Nightcrawler role, where he lost a lot of weight to look very skinny. But in Southpaw, Jake Gyllenhaal has transformed himself into a jacked, ripped beast, gaining 15 pounds of pure muscle.
|Jake Gyllenhaal as Billy Hope|
At the beginning of the movie, it shows Billy Hope (Jake Gyllenhaal) at the top of his game, but he's a boxer that endured the pain of the punches and constant jabs have left him punchy. After the opening boxing scene, his wife, Maureen (Rachel McAdams) wants him to slow down and enjoy their 11-year-old daughter, Leila (Oona Laurence). Maureen is not just a beautiful and sexy wife of the rich (although she looks very beautiful indeed in the movie) but she was the childhood friend of Billy. Both Billy and her grow up in Hell's Kitchen orphanages. McAdams, strong and smoldering, reflected a character that is strong and helped Billy Hope in his career direction but her role was cut short in the movie when Maureen is involved in a shooting accident. The incident was sparked by Miguel Escobar (Miguel Gomez), a fighter who thinks he is better than Billy Hope and wanted to trigger a fight with Billy Hope after a charity event turn ugly.
SOUTHPAW, MORE THAN JUST A BOXING FIGHT
The thing I like about Southpaw is that it's not all about a boxing fight. The entire team were committed to create a movie that involve a lot of emotion and sentiment. While the theme of the movie is similar to the many other boxing movies, the dynamics between Billy Hope and Leila was simply outstanding. Both Jake and Oona Laurence were great in their roles and their dynamics were authentic and so meaningful.
|Jake Gyllenhaal and Oona Laurence were great as father and daughter|
Even Yen Leng and I admitted that there we had teary eye during certain scenes. Both Jake and Oona were very convincing in their roles as father and daughter.
ANOTHER ROCKY MOVIE? SOMETHING LIKE THAT
This is the tricky part. To a certain expect, Southpaw is another Rocky movie but Jake and crew managed to pull it off.
The new training methods that Billy Hope learned from new trainer, Tick Wills (Forest Whitaker), who teaches Billy a new fighting style that doesn't involve stopping punches with his head. It also showed a lot about the betrayal that Billy faced from his former team and crooked agent. (Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson)
As usual, the intensive training were similar to that of Rocky but you can see that Jake really pull it off here. Of course, the directors were also very good in choosing the music to go with the movie. Generally, it's very motivating to watch the comeback kid that had lost everything.
So, while the sentiment of the father-daughter scenes were very powerful, the boxing scene was just as great and managed to distract us from that sentiment, making the teary moment a temporary one.
The loss of loved ones, the betrayal of friends, the loss of wealth and achievement, the relationship between father-daughter, the punches, the comeback....it's all a similar theme but Southpaw was a testament to individual brilliant act by people like Jake, Rachel McAdams and Oona Laurence. Definitely a movie to go to!