Rated PG-13 for violence, intense action and brief profanity.
Running time: 127 minutes
Distributor: Touchstone Pictures
Directed By: Shawn Levy
Written By: John Gatins, Shawn Levy, Richard Mathis
In Theaters: Oct 7, 2011 Wide
Film Review by Kam Williams
Excellent (3.5 stars)
Boxer-turned-fledgling fight promoter Charlie Kenton's (Hugh Jackman)
dreams of winning a world title were dashed the day robots began replacing
human beings in the ring. Broke and in a losing battle with booze, he
currently finds himself struggling to stay a step ahead of all the impatient
loan sharks holding his IOUs.
So unfolds Real Steel, an , overcoming-the-odds boxing flick packing a
surprisingly-powerful emotional punch (pardon the expression) for a
cliché-ridden sci-fi revolving around rock‘em-sock‘em robots in 2020. Though
the picture's basic plotline superficially sounds like a futuristic version
of Rocky, the sentimental father-son drama actually features far more of the
earmarks of a kid-friendly Steven Spielberg (who served as executive
producer) adventure than that Sly Stallone classic.
Credit director Shawn Levy for cultivating an endearing chemistry between co-stars Hugh Jackman and Dakota Goyo while simultaneously ratcheting up the tension around their pugilistic robot's ring prospects. Consequently, the audience ends up caring as much about Charlie and Max's blossoming relationship as about their underdog quest for the crown. Maybe more, as real heart trumps real steel.