Who knew there was so much drama behind the scenes of Olympic wrestling. Based on a true story Foxcatcher has seen Oscar nominations for actors Steve Carell and Mark Ruffalo as well as for director Bennett Miller, can this movie live up to the hype?
Brothers Mark (Channing Tatum) and Dave Schultz (Mark Ruffalo) are both US Olympic Wrestlers, however Mark feels overshadowed by his older brother Dave. When Mark is contacted by billionaire John E. du Pont (Steve Carell) to his farm, he offers Mark to join his private wrestling team, “Team Foxcatcher” (after his land Foxcatcher Farm), Mark sees an opportunity to make something for himself away from his brother. However Du Pont’s eccentric behaviour becomes more disturbed as time goes on, and when Dave joins the coaching of Team Foxcatcher, things becomes out of control.
Foxcatcher is one of those stories in which you can’t believe you haven’t heard of it before. Or at least I hadn’t. This a well made film, full of tense atmosphere and great performances. It’s mostly a drama but with Carell’s Du Pont menacingly hanging around the edges and circling the Schultz brothers it comes across like a thriller at times. The cast is strong all round, but Carell is the performance you will remember after watching the movie.
However there has been some controversy over the making of this film with the real Mark Schultz angrily disputing some elements of the movie. With that in mind you wonder whether interactions between Mark and Du Pont are as accurate as its portrayed in the movie. It also felt slow at the beginning and ends rather abruptly after the climax of Du Pont’s actions. Also while the movie is good, it’s doesn’t stand out as much as the other movies around this award season.
Rating 3.5/5 – three fine performances grounds this true crime drama