Lately, me and the boy have been taking in a veritable crapload of films. Some good ones, some great ones, some disappointing ones.
7 Pounds - we liked; Benjamin Button - kinda disappointing; Taken - not bad; Gran Turino - surprisingly good, etc, etc...
But out of all of them, The Wrestler made me think of actual people, who had similar paths.
Few people know this, but when I was younger I watched a bit of wrestling. I wasn't a huge fan, but there was the rare occasion that I'd voluntarily watch to see what the fuss was about.
Still makes me laugh. And no, I don't think it's supposed to.
He more or less personifies Mickey Rourke's stage show in the movie.
Ric Flair, on the other hand, was a bit more flamboyant with his act. He wrestled into old age, like in the movie, and is now still one of the best-known wrestlers ever.
But he's a great example of a performer who has a hard time letting go of his career.
Goes to show that wrestlers aren't all flash and wasted muscle. Some live and die for their sport, and there's nothing fake about it.