Tom Hardy’s stock, bar his turn in This Means War, has risen so much in the last three years, and on evidence of his performance in Warrior, this is no surprise.
Warrior is a simple story about family and the “underdog”, set around the powerful, sweaty world of UFC. There were in fact certain points in this movie I thought I could smell the testosterone coming out of my TV. This was, however, countered by the touching storyline of a family torn apart by alcoholism, reuniting in unforeseen circumstances. It’s about brothers, fathers, wives, sons and daughters; everyone will be able to find a character to whom they can relate.
Every actor and actress in this movie does a superb job with their characters and none more so than Tom Hardy. There are some actors that need an amazing script or director to get the best out of their performance, but with Hardy it’s something else; he can do so much by doing nothing, and has an intensity that is not matched in Hollywood these days. I’d even go so far as saying he is this generations’ Marlon Brando.
In the same way as Dredd, every single body blow, punch, grapple and hold is meant to be felt by the audience, which makes every fight scene feel real. It’s a fair old poke at over 2 hours runtime but it has a fly-on-the-wall aesthetic that increases the value of the story, actors’ performances and the gritty setting of the drama.
I couldn’t find a bad thing to say about Warrior. It’s moving, exciting, and if you aren’t a cynic, it’s believable, which is ultimately what you want from a drama.