Monday, February 13, 2012


WarriorPRELUDE: Nick Nolte has won a nomination for an Oscar® Best Supporting Actor for his role as the alcoholic father to two boys in the hard-hitting film Warrior. It’s almost a ‘comeback’ for the actor who has seen more screen time recently on police blotters and TV scandal sheets. His famous mug shot with wild hair has gone viral. Bad behavior aside, Nolte has always been a good actor as well as a bad boy.

Having grown up in Omaha, Nebraska (b. Feb. 8, 1941) and getting thrown out of school for his natural enthusiasm for mischief, he developed an interest in the theater. Moving out to the West Coast, he attended the Pasadena Playhouse and the Stella Adler Academy. He also took up surfing, and his natural blonde hair became platinum.  This attracted modeling scouts among others, and Nolte signed up to do some modeling for magazines and clothing manufacturers. He was the typical California surfing blonde god and became very popular modeling.

Modeling led to getting roles on television. He made his first big splash in the series Rich Man, Poor Man in 1976 and became an overnight sensation. He went into films and made the wildly popular 48 Hours with Eddie Murphy, and they both became stars. A result of that was being named “Sexiest Man Alive” in 1992 by People Magazine.

Prior to that honor, he made the excellent film Prince of Tides in 1991 with Barbra Streisand. For his role he received his first Oscar® nomination for Best Actor. His second Oscar® nomination as Best Actor came in 1997 for the film Affliction. His third Oscar® nomination came as a Best Supporting Actor for Warrior in 2012.

REVIEW: With a title like Warrior, one would expect to see muscle-bound men wearing togas or chain mail and wielding swords or catapults. Not so in this inspiring drama of today, set in modern times. Gavin O’Connor directed this gripping tale for Lionsgate.

Get ready for not one, but two, new stars to emerge from this gripping sports and family relations drama. Both young, handsome and talented, actors Tom Hardy (Inception) and Joel Edgerton (Star Wars III) are sure to inflame female hearts and cause envy in males.

Hardy plays Tommy Conlon, a Marine who is returning home after a 14-year gap. Although estranged from his dad, terrifically played by Nick Nolte, Tommy seeks his help as a trainer for the biggest purse martial arts event in history. Nolte was a neglectful father and a drunk to boot, but he was one of the top fight trainers in his day, and still knows his business. With this probably the best part Nolte has had in years, it will redeem him in the eyes of the Hollywood community and remind them and us that he is a touching and solid actor. Nolte is just the right age, and has enough of life’s miles on his demeanor to look naturally bedraggled without the use of Hollywood make-up magic.  He steals the picture.

Brother Brendan (Edgerton), although separated through divorce from his brother Tommy for years, still wants to mend their family rift. However, he is a school teacher who is currently going through terrific financial hardships. As a former fighter himself, he re-enters the fight game to pay the bills. Wife Jennifer Morrison (TV’s “House”) is not keen on his getting beaten up every night. As an underdog, his surprising rise in the fight world pus him on a collision course with the mad bull-dog brother Tommy.

Inevitably, the two brothers are paired to confront each other in the Sparta Games. Emotions come to a climax in a rousing final battle of muscle, tears, skill, and possible forgiveness as the boys battle it out to a surprising finish. The fight serves as the vehicle for redemption of the human spirit and the absolute power it has over the bond of brothers and families.

Although Nolte shines in his part as the alcoholic and absent father, newcomers Hardy and Edgerton show great promise as future leading men. Both masculine, they are different in personality and manner. Hardy is rough and tough and actually looks like a Marine with all of his tattoos and bulging muscles. Edgerton could possibly be the romantic type because of his style and aesthetic looks. Needless to say, two stars are born with this look into the hearts of two boys who were abandoned by their family as teens. The film shows how it affected them as they grew into self-supporting men who seek the help of their father, but do not want to recognize their longing for some male bonding and love between them.
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