Although this film has an awesome trailer it’s drags and disappoints throughout the entire movie. Like all great boxing films, it features a ruthless boxer that gives his all to the ring and that’s well received but on the other hand it also features a lot of drawn out scenes and incohesive storytelling that kills the storyline entirely for no reason at all. The other killer to this film is the audio, throughout the whole film you’ll have a hard time understanding what anybody is saying when it counts the most.
The plot is based on a boxer who has it all, thinking Floyd Mayweather like. Due to his terrible boxing strategy a.k.a. getting tagged in the face a thosand times like Rocky Balboa himself his career quickly starts to decline as his injuries grow worst and worst. While suffering painstaking injuries he soon finds himself in a downward spiral losing everything including his family and friends. In a final attempt to claim his life back he hires a trainer to train him and provide him with opportunities to try to rise to the top and reclaim everything he once lost.
When it comes to having an awesome cast they did well with having Jake Gyllenhaal (Billy Hope), Forest Whitaker (Tick Wills), 50 Cent (Jordan Mains), Victor Ortiz (Ramone), and Skylan Brooks (Hoppy) on their squad. Everyone seemed to play their character very well but it was difficult to take 50 Cent serious as a filthy rich promoter especially after the news broke that he went bankrupt a few weeks earlier. Gyllenhaal managed well throughout the film playing a boxer that was once on top and lost everything due to his anger management issues and ego. Throughout the film you can find the Boxer giving his all to try to retain the little bit of sanity he has left in his broken world. In a final attempt to gain all that he once lost he hits an all-time low and takes a job as a janitor to be trained by Tick Wills and reclaim his title as the World Champion of the world.
Now the music for this film was spot on considering throughout the entire film Billy Hope was riddled with one dramatic scene after another. Whether he lost his wife, child, trainer, promoter, etc. he was always filled with a trying time throughout the movie. If you listen to the Southpaw (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) you’ll instantly understand the mood and desire to overcome darkness featured in the film.
This was something they did pretty well but here are some of the things that killed this film entirely for me. For starters when watching a boxing film you want to see “boxing,” so when your only left to see about three fights total throughout an almost two-hour film it’s very disappointing. Also, most of the scenes in the film was held at the Child Protection Services office which was entirely lame and drawn out. If you can get over this you’ll be good but the final straw was how terrible the audio for the vocals were throughout the entire film. Billy Hope was talking like the Dark Knight throughout the entire film it was almost like a drunken mumble he would use to communicate his feelings throughout the movie, which left you looking at some scenes asking yourself “what the heck did he just say?”. Also, understanding that he changes his boxing style at the end of the film and one of the best scenes live there after it happens there were nothing but *crickets* after the big wow moment and everyone left the theatre blank face. Now this was hilarious to see but also quite sad considering the fact that it was Billy Hope’s glory moment.
I’d say this is an ok if not mediocre boxing film IMHO, there were not any memorable moments and or quotes to take away from the film. If you’re thinking about checking this film out I’d say wait til it’s featured at the Red Box and/or streaming on Netflix’s to check it out. It’s def not worth the $16-$20 pricetag for a date night. After all who wants to see a boxing movie where the main fighter gets his face bashed in the entire time, loses everything he has, and spends 80% of his time in a Case Workers office. Plus it wouldn’t be recommended for a date night considering there’s so much blood, spit and drool involved in this film anyway.
Do yourself a favor and save your money.
Wait til it's at Red Box or on Netflix's5
Acting score 5
Story score 5
Music & SFX score 7