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The Wrestler (2008)

R  |   |  Drama, Sport  |  30 January 2009 (USA)
7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 239,481 users   Metascore: 81/100
Reviews: 544 user | 388 critic | 36 from Metacritic.com

A faded professional wrestler must retire, but finds his quest for a new life outside the ring a dispiriting struggle.

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(as Robert Siegel)
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Title: The Wrestler (2008)

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 61 wins & 51 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Ernest Miller ...
Dylan Keith Summers ...
Necro Butcher (as Dylan Summers)
Tommy Farra ...
Mike Miller ...
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Admissions Desk Woman
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Storyline

This is a drama about an aging professional wrestler, decades past his prime, who now barely gets by working small wrestling shows in VFW halls and as a part-time grocery store employee. As he faces health problems that may end his wrestling career for good he attempts to come to terms with his life outside the ring: by working full time at the grocery store, trying to reconcile with the daughter he abandoned in childhood and forming a closer bond with a stripper he has romantic feelings for. He struggles with his new life and an offer of a high-profile rematch with his 1980s arch-nemesis, The Ayatollah, which may be his ticket back to stardom. Written by Matlock-6

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Love. Pain. Glory.

Genres:

Drama | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, sexuality/nudity, language and some drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

30 January 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El luchador  »

Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$202,714 (USA) (19 December 2008)

Gross:

$26,236,603 (USA) (8 May 2009)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

World Wrestling Entertainment Hall of Famer Afa Anoai ("The Wild Samoan") trained Mickey Rourke and choreographed the matches. His daughter, Vale Anoai, was given a brief role as a pharmacist. See more »

Goofs

When Randy is sitting in his car telling Cassidy about his heart attack, his hair alternates from in front of his ear to behind in several shots. See more »

Quotes

Nick Volpe: You know what I'm thinkin'? Two words... RE - MATCH.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Big Bang Theory: The Killer Robot Instability (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Soundtrack to a War
Written by Georg Dolivo, Robert Downes, Bryan Forsythe, Stefan Sigerson, and Jackie Enx
Performed by Rhino Bucket
Courtesy of Acetate Records
By Arrangement with pigFactory USA, LLC
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Brutal, Honest, Touching film
20 January 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The Wrestler is a drama centered around an aging professional wrestler past his prime. It's so much more than that. You don't have to be a fan of wrestling to enjoy this film. The wrestling part of it can be put aside as a back story. Randy "The Ram" could be in any other profession, doing any other thing and could be in the same situation. That's what's so great about it. He's just a lonely guy, whose life seems to have passed him by. A middle aged man who doesn't have much going for him. Sure, he's a wrestler, but he needs wrestling more than wrestling needs him. He needs it to feel important, to feel like a somebody. He really has nothing to show for himself, no wife, just a daughter he hasn't been there for his whole life. Missed opportunities. He's sad and alone and we really do feel for him.

A closer bond seems to be forming between him and his stripper friend, played by Marisa Tomei, who seems to be in a similar situation as he is. The middle aged stripper who seems to have a real connection with "The Ram" is shown in another misunderstood profession. We all may not be as different as we may think. Health problems compromise his wrestling career as he tries to deal with the real world and rebuild his relationship with his abandoned daughter. The scenes with Evan Rachel Wood (his daughter) are touching. Beautifully done. Rourke's character portrayal of the Ram is one of the best in a long time. He's not just acting, he transforms into the character on screen. It's amazing to watch. All the credit he's getting is truly deserved.

The film is Directed by Darren Aronofsky, who also directed Requiem for a Dream. He does a beautiful job showing the sport with realism. The film respects the wrestlers and their world, and expects the same from the audience. This film is done in a style that's so real, so honest, so amazing, in easily one of the best films of the year. All around great performances and great direction. Definitely worth checking out sometime.


291 of 321 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Wonder what happened to Ram's money jk80
Handheld camera - was is necessary ???? minidodo
The Wrestler Makes Me Cry riku-7
So, was she.... bowmanblue
Nicholas Cage? godwulf1
If he died at the end, did his daughter come to the funeral? father247
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