Grudge Match – The STiXXclusive Review

It’s been said repeatedly enough for it to become a cliché that it’s unhealthy to hold grudges, and it’s true. It’s not healthy to dwindle on the past and hope for a resolution when both parties will never come down to one. People hold grudges over money, relationships, and even in sports, grudges are the most common because of the sheer spirit of competition. Remember when Al Pacino and Robert De Niro were cast together in Righteous Kill and it was supposed to be this amazing movie because two of the greatest actors in a generation would be working together? Remember when it flopped? I do, and that’s exactly why I was skeptical when they brought together Rocky Balboa (Stallone from the Rocky movies) & Jake LaMotta (De Niro from Raging Bull) together in what would have been an epic movie about 30 years ago. Now, a lot of people were skeptical that it would just be a showcase of bad writing and lame comedy, and trust me even I was hesitant to watch it in theatres, but what I learned from Righteous Kill is that (ironically) it’s not healthy to hold grudges.

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Boxing is a great sport and it has produced some of the best movies in Cinema (the two aforementioned movies, and you can also throw in Ali), but what often gets overlooked are the actors who played the heroes in their prime vanish into smaller roles, but their legacies will always be engrained in popular culture forever. I know a thing or two about rivalries, and the one thing about them is that it’s always about getting one more shot at them head to head to see who’s better. But when abruptly you can’t get that chance, there’s always the ‘what-if’ that floats around and boggles your mind for the longest time. Neglect, regret, and a feeling of being incomplete settles in just for that one taste of what could be a sweet victory. When you’re old and decrepit, that hunger and fire in your belly can still be more powerful than anything physical and can inspire you to get back to feeling more alive. A character from The Boondocks fit that description perfectly – Stinkmeaner. He hated everything, and that’s what was able to keep him alive for so long. There are levels of hate, but hate with respect is the difference between hate just to hate. Two inner city rivals gearing up to prepare for one last bout after 3 decades isn’t what a lot of people today would be interested in, and I like the way how social networking and even taking jabs at MMA fighting sparked up interest in the movie (and it clearly showed off the generation gap).

Where there was the story between the two fighters, the comedic relief provided by Alan Arkin and Kevin Hart were great because they were essentially in their natural state, and where sometimes I find Kevin Hart to be incredulously annoying, he wasn’t in this case and I laughed a lot throughout this movie. Also, it was a really feel good movie because it told the story of not only the fictional rivals, but with Stallone and De Niro, they’ve been in the game for so many years, for them to still be going like they’re back in their 20s and 30s, it’s something to truly appreciate.

I would definitely recommend checking this movie out because it’s a great movie in all phases and it gets right to the point of what needs to be assessed when it comes down to a grudge: there’s an incident, cobwebs of issues, a precedent in which to settle the grudge, and ultimately true sportsmanship prevails. It’s quite the watch, and definitely one you’d enjoy, so do so. But for now, this is my opinion, this is my review

That’s My Word & It STiXX

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