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Real Steel

   

Real Steel (2011) starring Hugh Jackman, Evangeline Lily, Dakota Goyo, Anthony Mackie

A divorced dad is forced to reconcile with the son he barely knows, over their love of fighting robots. Can they go from zeroes to champions in Real Steel?

Issues with Real Steel

  • Hugh Jackman’s character is unlikable. He’s has a roguish charm, yes. But – he’s had no interaction with his son for 11 years. He’s in debt to virtually everyone, including his love interest. He’s frankly not very good at running the fighting robots — although that’s both his job and passion.
  • Evangeline Lilly’s character is … unrealistic. She’s still in love with Hugh Jackman’s character … For no obvious reason, other than good looks. He used to be a good fighter, many years ago. But his inability to pay his bill at her facility is helping push her to bankruptcy. Its not only her business, its her inheritance from her father. The father that liked Hugh’s character. She knows all of his bad points, but ignores them anyway.
  • The kid is always right. Always. At the age of 11, he knows more about building, rebuilding, and improving robots than his dad. Although that’s how his dad’s supposedly been earning a living for over a decade. He knows more about boxing ?!?

Cast of characters

  • Hugh Jackman (X-Men: The Last Stand) as Charlie Kenton.
  • Dakota Goyo as Max Kenton
  • Evangeline Lily (Ant-Man) as Bailey Tallet
  • Anthony Mackie (Captain America: Winter Soldier) as Finn
  • Olga Fonda as Farra Lemkova
  • Karl Yune as Tak Mashido
  • Kevin Durand as Ricky
  • Hope Davis as Aunt Debra
  • James Rebhorn as Marvin

Editorial review of Real Steel courtesy of Amazon.com

Sometime in the not-too-distant future, boxing has been outlawed and replaced by fighting matches with robots. Big robots. Hulking, rock ’em, sock ’em mechanical robots. But if those machines are cutting edge, Real Steel sticks to an old-fashioned style of storytelling, with a tale of a down-and-out fight manager (Hugh Jackman) looking for a good ‘bot to get back in the game, and get back out of debt. Hearts are further tugged by the arrival of this guy’s 11-year-old son (Dakota Goyo), who hasn’t seen his dad in many years but now needs tending. There’s something endearing about the way nobody ever pauses to remark on the fact that they are in the presence of giant remote-controlled prizefighting robots; it’s taken for granted in this cockeyed universe.

Loosely inspired by a Richard Matheson-penned episode of The Twilight Zone, Shawn Levy’s film is lavishly mounted and fairly ridiculous–although in this case, the human interactions are more preposterous and formulaic than the fun robot action. Jackman plays to his roguish strengths, Evangeline Lilly (Lost) gets the perfunctory love interest role, and the villains are uncomplicatedly hissable, from Jackman’s good ol’ boy rival (Kevin Durand) to the heavily accented owners (Olga Fonda, Karl Yune) of the most fearsome of robots, the undefeated Zeus. If you can imagine Rocky restaged with a pile of spare parts, you might be the audience for Real Steel. –Robert Horton

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