The BMAF have been on a cruise for a much-needed recharge of the batteries !
Whilst onboard, we saw the boxing film Southpaw and yet again this sport has provided a great watchable film. Is there any other sporting genre than boxing that does as well at the movies?
Southpaw again like Rocky and The Fighter to name two, plays with the emotions as we watch one man battle with loss, both physical & emotional and indeed financial.
Ageing boxer Billy Hope (played by Jake Gyllenhaal) is at the top of his game and ready to sign a deal to leave him financially secure for the rest of his life
At a charity event, an argument with a fighter who claims to be the number 1 contender who feels he is not being given his shot at the title ends in tragic consequences, with Billy’s wife (Rachel McAdams) being shot.
Billy’s life falls apart, he has not been looked after by his agent amongst others & having lost his lucrative deal due to going off the rails, he then loses custody of his daughter.
Alone & broke, Billy must not only prove he has his anger under control, he must rebuild his life from the bottom again to win back his daughter & regain her respect, having realised that not only has he lost his wife, she has lost her mum & to an extent her dad too, as he went missing when she needed him the most.
Befriending an old and weary coach (Forest Whitaker) Billy takes on a cleaner role & connects with the younger kids from the streets
Through his agent, Billy changes his boxing techniques & begins his life again.
The agent who mishandled his finances & interests, feels he can get more out of Billy by selling a rematch as a grudge match with the boxer involved in the tragic events that resulted in the death of his wife
With the usual rousing montage, featuring music from Eminem, who at one point was attached to the film to play the lead as an unofficial sequel to Eight Mile
What makes this film different to most boxing films is that we know Billy is only taking the fight, for financial security in order to win his daughter back, so we go into the fight not being 100% sure he will win, only that he will put in a performance to get paid and win her back.
Another great performance from Jake Gyllenhaal makes this a great watch and was one of our favourites this year. If you enjoy sporting films especially boxing you won’t want to miss this one!