7.9/10
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573 user 406 critic

The Wrestler (2008)

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2:30 | Trailer
A faded professional wrestler must retire, but finds his quest for a new life outside the ring a dispiriting struggle.

Director:

Darren Aronofsky

Writer:

Robert Siegel
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Popularity
2,145 ( 88)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 58 wins & 87 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mickey Rourke ... Randy 'The Ram' Robinson
Marisa Tomei ... Cassidy
Evan Rachel Wood ... Stephanie
Mark Margolis ... Lenny
Todd Barry ... Wayne
Wass Stevens ... Nick Volpe
Judah Friedlander ... Scott Brumberg
Ernest Miller Ernest Miller ... The Ayatollah
Dylan Keith Summers ... Necro Butcher (as Dylan Summers)
Tommy Farra Tommy Farra ... Tommy Rotten
Mike Miller Mike Miller ... Lex Lethal
Marcia Jean Kurtz ... Admissions Desk Woman
John D'Leo ... Adam
Ajay Naidu ... Medic
Gregg Bello ... JAPW Promoter Larry Cohen
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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:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | France

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 January 2009 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El luchador See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$202,714, 21 December 2008

Gross USA:

$26,238,243

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$44,703,995
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39:1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

During the strip club scene in which Ram (Mickey Rourke) is showing Cassidy (Marisa Tomei) some of the scars he has accumulated throughout his career and she tells him, "He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed" - this is a direct and word for word reference to the Old Testament biblical verse of Isaiah 53:5. Chapter 53 of the book of Isaiah is the last of four songs about "The Suffering Servant" and it tells the story of a "Man of Sorrows". See more »

Goofs

When Randy wakes up in the hospital he is not on a ventilator machine and is breathing on his own (he is wearing a nasal cannula with oxygen); Yet as the camera pans out in the next scene it can clearly be seen that he has been intubated and is attached to a ventilator machine that is breathing for him. See more »

Quotes

Alyssa: Party like a fireman!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Logan (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Hit Da Flo
Written by Joseph Aschalew and Bradley P. Brandon
Performed by Trai'd
Courtesy of Hitz Committee/Zomba
By Arrangement with Sony BMG Music Entertainment
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A Haunting Portrait Of Loneliness
25 March 2009 | by ccthemovieman-1See all my reviews

Wow, what a sordid but fascinating film. I can why Mickey Rourke won so many awards for his performance, too. The same goes for the film.

The film was shocking to me: For instance, it was a shock seeing Rourke -"Randy The Ram" - with the long, flowing blond hair and rippling muscles. Hey, it's not that former boxer was ever in bad shape, but he never had muscles like this either. The man must have pumped a lot of iron to get ready for this role as an aging wrestler.

Another shock was seeing Maria Tomei, of "My Cousin Vinny" fame, naked - and in that state in more than one scene. She didn't leave much to the imagination as "Cassidy." A third shock was seeing some of the early wrestling scenes. Yeah, pro wrestling is rough stuff and it's bloody and it's fake, etc., but the scenes in here are pretty brutal, more than I've ever seen on TV. The one extended match with the "staples" was pretty gruesome.

Evan Rachel Wood is convincing as Randy's daughter "Stephanie." This 21-year-old is no stranger to acting, having been doing it since she was four! The scenes with her and her dad are memorable.

When the shock of the above scenes of sex and violence (and language) fade away, underneath it all is a very tender, sad tale of a lonely man who invested too much in his career and, after coming close to mortality, realizes the important of family and simply being loved by anyone. That's what sticks with you long after the film ends. Loneliness can be a killer.

"Randy" tries to mend fences and post a few himself - in his final quest not to wind up as an island in this world of humanity - with both successful and unsuccessful results. Sometimes you can never change what you are, and sometimes you can. Both of those are demonstrated here in this oddly-edgy-but sentimental film.


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