Warrior (2011)

9.0 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Acting: 9/10
Visuals: 8/10

Smart story, great acting

Fighting could turn some off

Movie Info

Movie Name: Warrior

Studio: Mimram Schur Pictures

Genre(s): Drama/Sports

Release Date(s): September 9, 2011

MPAA Rating: PG-13


I will make it from a strip club parking lot to glory!

A shattered soldier named Tommy Conlon (Tom Hardy) comes home to see his recovering alcoholic father Patty (Nick Nolte) under a new name and becomes an internet sensation when he takes down Pete “Mad Dog” Grimes (Erik Apple) in a fight.  His estranged brother Brendon Colon (Joel Edgerton) is struggling to make ends meet as a teacher and trying to keep his home after an expensive surgery for a his child.  Tommy and Brendon haven’t spoken for years, both blaming their father for what happened to their family.  Now both Tommy and Brendon are headed back to the ring in a national mixed martial arts competition that could bring them head-to-head.


Tommy…you’re acting like an ass

Warrior was written and directed by Gavin O’Connor and was praised by critics.  Warrior‘s critical acclaim didn’t transfer to ticket sales, and Warrior essentially tanked at the box-office not even making its budget.  Nick Nolte’s work as a recovering alcoholic seeking acceptence and forgiveness from both his children was recognized by the Academy Awards in a Best Supporting Actor nomination.

Warrior was surprisingly good.  I had seen the trailers and comparisons to Rocky but with ultimate fighting.  It looked very cheesy and cheap and just out to capitalize on the ultimate fighting craze.  This really isn’t true.  Yes, people who dislike ultimate fighting might dislike this movie, but the ultimate fighting portion really doesn’t become the thrust of what drives the film.


I’m going to kick the snot out of my brother

Warrior works because of the strong acting on the part of Hardy and Edgerton.  They both play their parts in a way that you don’t want either one to lose.  Tommy’s past comes back to haunt him raises the ante, but Brendon is more of the underdog since he physically appears smaller and less bulked up.  This seems to transfer into two different fighting styles…Brendon is in for the submission while Tommy goes the route of beating the competitors into submission.  It is the differences in style and the underdog factor (plus the style of the film) that makes it feel like Rocky.  Nolte gets a lot of acclaim as Tommy and Brendon’s father, but I actually feel that Hardy and Edgerton should get more of the spotlight…but when there are two stars sharing a movie sometimes they cancel each other out when it comes to recognition.

Warrior should be checked out, even if you don’t like ultimate fighting.  The fighting is violent, but it isn’t as violent as watching the real stuff on TV.  If you can make it past the fighting, Warrior is much better than you might expect.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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