Fighting With My Family is directed by Stephen Merchant and this is the bio-pic of professional wrestler Paige. This movie shows her journey from being a young girl from Norwich who wrestles with her family to being the wrestler everyone now knows her as. The movie stars Florence Pugh as Paige. She is joined by Jack Lowden, Nick Frost, Lena Headey and Vince Vaughn.
A movie like this, a bio-pic, is supposed to do two things, do justice to it’s source material in this case Paige’s journey. The other thing is to change the minds of the audience about the art that’s taking place in the movie. Now I am not a wrestling fan whatsoever, I never cared for it, never had any interest and if you are a fan, I am deeply sorry to say this but I was that guy who would say it’s just a fake show. I was not even planning on seeing this movie, this movie felt like a chore to get rid of. Now, having seen Fighting With My Family, I have learned a valuable lesson. Never judge a movie. Not by it’s trailer, not by it’s story, not by anything. Watch the movie then criticize it.
Halfway through the movie I found myself realizing how much I was enjoying this movie. I found this as a bit of a shock since as I said, I am not a wrestling fan. What Fighting With My Family does is present a cast of loveable characters portrayed by a wonderful cast and make you care for them. Deep down this movie is about achieving your dreams, yes it does have tons of wrestling footage and references for the fans but from my perspective, this movie was at it’s strongest in the emotional parts of the movie.
None of those scenes would work without the cast. That being said, I have never seen the people they are portraying so I can’t say how good of a job they did with that but the characters I saw were real, relatable and flawed. Florence Pugh leads this movie as Paige. She has such a charismatic and energetic presence, she leads this movie with ease. No wonder she was chosen to portray Paige. Jack Lowden was also great as Zak, her older brother, he and Pugh handled the emotional scenes really well. These great performances made me care for these character which benefits the movie a lot.
As a result of the great acting, the movie ended on a high note with an emotional ending which is sure to leave fans teary-eyed and cheering. Another thing I noticed I liked was the editing and cinematography. The movie really knows how to play with shots and colour and I was really impressed by the artistic flair this movie carried. The third act in particular was really beautiful to look at. The only real flaw I have with this movie is how predictable the story can be. Just last November, Bohemian Rhapsody came out which also had a predictable story. I know it’s not really not fair to judge a bio-pic on it’s predicable story but it still hurts the experience.
Overall Fighting With My Family is a treat that wrestling fans and non-fans will enjoy. It’s a heartwarming story with lots of humor and energy. I can now say I have a newfound respect for the wrestling industry. The fact that a movie under two hours changed my mind on wrestling speaks for itself. While it can feel familiar at times, the cast and the characters they’re portraying make up for it with emotional, humorous and realistic performances.