Nothing brings an estranged father and son together like robot boxing! Real Steel is not just an action packed, futuristic flick…it also has heart: think of Rocky with robots meets The Champ (1979).
Set in a future where physical contact is obsolete among humans in the boxing ring and where battling robots are all the rage. Hugh Jackman (X:Men Origins: Wolverine) plays Charlie Kenton, a broke, washed up, ex pro boxer who gambles with robots and is always on the run from those he owes money too. His son, Max (Dakota Goyo), who is fascinated with robot boxing and seeks interest in his father’s so-called career, is forced to spend time with him and Charlie becomes unsure how to fit this kid he knows nothing about, into his gritty lifestyle. After a brief bonding moment in a robot junkyard, they find an old sparring bot (Atom) that Max is determined he can make something out of. He convinces his father to train Atom, who has been programmed to shadow its owners every move. Max is no angel though…he’s got a quick wit, which has been evidently rubbed off from his father, but his intellect (a trait Charlie seems to lack) helps take Atom into fame leading to the big leagues.
The movie is appropriate for all ages (with a PG-13 rating) and its plot centers on this robot of the past generation, who gains recognition because of Max’s determination and a catchy dance intro before each fight. We also see elements of a father/son relationship that endures its own struggles, and all Max wants from Charlie is for him to fight for a chance at being a father for once in his life. Hugh Jackman plays the part of dead beat dad well and Dakota Goyo, fresh off playing young Thor in Marvels latest adaptation, is a young star to watch.
With Real Steel 2 already being talked about before this premiere has even been released to the general public, it’s probably because many have had a chance to see an advance screening, giving it an A+ for originality and entertainment value. The audience I was with cheered during climatic moments, and I’m sure there are those that shed a tear when the emotions were raw. At the end, the crowd went wild and there is no doubt that Real Steel will be the fall season’s first hit. The movie comes out in theaters October 7th nationwide and is definitely a must see!