The Wrestler

If you are a fan of Mickey Rourke's, please stay away from this pathetic film, as it cruelly documents his own real-life downward spiral from movie star glamour, to the disfigured ruin of his life.

If you are NOT a fan of Mickey Rourke's, please stay away from this bathetic film, as it has absolutely no socially redeeming qualities: No one to root for, no hope in sight and no happy ending.

If you don't care one way or another about Mickey Rourke, please stay away from this horrific film just on its merits: it is bleak, dreary, frustrating and tragic. In addition, you may be offended by the blood, the drugs, the sex or the language.

I WAS interested to see how friendly and supportive the wrestling community is within itself. They review the moves they plan to make and try not to hurt each other more than absolutely necessary. On the other hand, I hated the maiming by barbed wire, the staples shot into live flesh and the drugs necessary to deal with the pain.

I'm just sorry Marisa Tomei needs work this badly...her role will do nothing for her once-stellar career.

There had been pre-Oscar buzz about Rourke's performance, but looking at the published release date of January 16, 2009, I thought the producers have given up on that idea. They have opted for a limited release before the end of the year, I'm sorry to say. I was going to hold this review until a more appropriate date, but I just want to get it off my chest.

If you have a more productive way to spend 109 minutes, please stay away from this film...

* * * * * * * *

Afterthought: As Academy Award time approaches, a friend and I conducted an unscientific survey of moviegoers who were standing in line for another film. We discovered that the fans who LOVED this film are predominately men, while most women found it revolting.