23 February 2019 | jwwalrath-227-85487
Fighting with my Family, a dramedy biopic of World Wrestling Entertainment's Paige's journey to becoming a wrestling celebrity and her family who are all wrestlers, is a fun little film. It's fairly humorous. The oddball dynamics and conflicts within the family work well. It's also interesting to watch the training required for the WWE. (Although if you really prefer the illusion of the stories and personalities and all of that, you may not want to see how the sausage gets made.)
Paige's inner struggles could've been done better. Don't get me wrong, the protagonist has to have something to overcome, but her self-doubt was spread way too long. Doubt even occurs at her famed winning of the Divas belt, the most obviously manufactured scene in the film, which was a mistake. In order to be selected for such a publicized match, the wrestler's persona had to have been well-honed by then. Now that I think about it, you see Paige falter so much that you never get a real feel for her pubic persona at all.
Fans of WWE should be warned that even though the organization produced this the movie doesn't have the feel of it. This is a very British film directed by comic actor/writer Stephen Merchant. It has more the general pacing and feel of Bend it Like Beckham.
Florence Pugh does a great job as Paige. Heck the entire cast playing the family are pretty good, including Game of Thrones' Lena Heady as the mom and Nick Frost as the dad. He is really underappreciated as a character actor. He has all these little mannerisms that just make the performance. Vince Vaughn plays the more serious and predictable role of the tough but fair trainer/mentor, but he does it well and it's nice to see him no longer typecast after his Old School/Wedding Crashers period. Although the trailers advertise the Rock, he'sonly in three scenes. Still, he's THE ROCK and his first scene in particular is pretty funny.
I know I might've given more description to the cons than the pros here, but that's because a lot of this film works so fluidly that it's hard to really focus on the positive elements. I legitimately enjoyed myself and I'm not a professional wrestling fan.