Saturday, 26 November 2011

MillIon Dollar Baby

Million Dollar Baby, 2004
Directed by Clint Eastwood
Nominated for 7 Oscars, Won 4

Frankie Dunn has coached some amazing boxers in his time, but he "doesn't train girls". At least, that's what he tells Maggie Fitzgerald when she comes up to him after a match, when she joins his gym, and when she won't go away. After a little convincing from his old partner that helps him oversee his gym, Eddie Scrap-Irons Dupris, and when his best fighter leaves him for another coach and goes on to win World Champion, he finally agrees to take her own, and she tells him he'll never regret it.

I got this movie out from the public library. I got about halfway through it when it started acting up, and then just stopped working completely. At that point, while I searched for the rest online (shhh) and loaded it up, I thought this movie was so-so. Hilary Swank was pretty good, Morgan Freeman was great (when he had screentime), and Clint Eastwood... well, he's not really my favourite actor, though he also did a good performance.

The story was interesting, albeit progressing really slowly, with not too much action besides the odd might (which Maggie always seems to be losing, or owning). It was more talk than action, and I haven't decided whether that was a good thing or not. I wasn't exactly sure where this was going when we got to the halfway point.

It's hard to make any comments anymore because the second half of the movie completely makes up for the slow and drawn out first. This is where all the performances truly shine. Swank blew me with her performance, as did Eastwood. Though Morgan Freeman, who won an Oscar for this performance, didn't have a whole lot of screen time.

The lighting, also, I thought was interesting in this film. I know that's kind of an odd thing to remark upon, but I really noticed it. Many times, faces were shadowed while bodies had light cast upon them, or half faces were illuminated, and half weren't, or only one characters could be seen. It was an interesting technique.

I'm not sure what else to say about this film because if I say anything else, I would spoil so much of it. This is a tough rate because the 2 halves of the movie were so different, and I felt so differently about the two of them. I'm sorry I can't say more about this film, but this is a spoiler-free blog!

The only thing I was say more is, I haven't cried harder in any film. Yet. But I am, slightly, a movie-crier.

Overall, the film was an okay one. It's definitely not my favourite movie, not even my favourite boxing movie (The Fighter was just really good, sorry), but it had some great performances, looked really great, had an interesting story, and had potential, though I think it could've been done better, though I do applaud the ending, which was fantastically done.

Acting- 9/10 
Directing- 8/10 
Screenplay- 7.5/10 
Visuals- 7.5/10 
Music- 7/10 
Emotional Connection- 8.5/10 
Entertainment- 7/10 
Rewatchability- 6.5/10 
Overall Enjoyment- 7.5/10 
Overall Package- 7.5/10       

Total: 76/100

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