Christian Bale is likely remembered by non-fans for his violent attacks against the paparazzi and even, allegedly, members of his family. But if you look beyond the actor’s media personna, you can really see the talent that this multi-faceted actor brings to the screen.
Being a fan of Bale’s since Newsies (1992) and Little Women (1994), I’ve watched the actor grow from a squeaking streetboy singer to quite the convincing crack-addict boxer. (For an extended list of Bale’s screen roles, check out his IMDB profile, http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000288/ ).
In The Fighter, Bale plays former rising boxer Dicky Eklund, the pride of Lowell, Mass., who is best known for knocking out Sugar Ray Leonard. His fame takes a turn for the worst, as he becomes a crack addict. Meanwhile, his half-brother Micky Ward (Mark Wahlberg) struggles to surface as a promising boxer under the shadow of his brother.
Mickey meets Charlene (Amy Adams), a foul-mouthed college drop-out bartender who convinces Micky he’s worth more than his family’s problems. The story of struggle, survival, and triumph is mirroed with themes of love, family, and trust.
Having watched Bale in many roles, his performance was one that made an otherwise ordinary movie extraordinary. The obvious weight loss, heavy Mass. accent, and compulsive addict behaviors added drama, sadness, pity, and sympathy to the audience emotions.
Without giving anything else away, go see The Fighter before it leaves the theaters. I wouldn’t be surprised if Bale walked home with an Oscar for this one.