real steel movie review

matt: Let me first say, there really was nothing better in list of available movies at Red Box. I thought that since it had Hugh Jackman in it, how bad could it be. Well, not as bad as Cowboys vs. Aliens. The movie is completely corny but you have to expect that going in, after all, it is robot boxing.

Real Steel is a mix of Rocky 1 and Rocky 4 but this time with an annoying, snot-nose kid. Real Steel is a tale of a down on his luck guy who participates in the world of robot boxing. He has spent the last few years of his life on this sport risking everything, his family, friends and all his possessions, to make it big. Along the way he finds something more important, a relationship with his son.

Essentially, this was a money grab for Mr. Wolverine. I can’t imagine being in his position and hearing his agent talk him into this one. Maybe something like this:

Hugh: (as he eats with his fake wolverine claws) “What do we have to work on?”

Agent: “Wolverine…I mean hugh, there is a script for a role in another Nicole Kidman Jane Austen movie or there is this…robot boxing…futuristic…rocky knock-off.”

Hugh: “Hmmm…tell me more about this robot boxing movie.”

Agent: “Well…you play a dad who had a son but ran out on him and his mother. He is this cocky, arrogant guy who tries to make it big in the sport of robot boxing…”

Hugh: “So, I play the robot right? And beat a bunch of people up, lose then come out victorious in the end? It’s a superhero movie?”

Agent: “Ummm… kind of. You control the robot and apply your old boxing technique.”

Hugh: “So…what kind of movie is it?”

Agent: “It is a family movie. You know…so you can impress your son and tell him you are more than a superhero character.”

Hugh: “But it is about boxing, how can it be a kid friendly movie?”

Agent: “Because it has robots.”

Hugh: “Robots…”

Agent: “Yeah, robots are big right now. Everyone is doing a robot movie. All the big time actors do movies with robots”

Hugh: “What does the script look like?”

Agent: “Errrr…it isn’t bad…”

Hugh: “So it’s not good?”

Agent: “Ughhh…”

Hugh: “Well, how much does it pay?”

Agent: “20 million”

Hugh: “20 million?! Done”

Agent: “Great, I promise, you won’t regret it. We will find you another awesome movie after you do this.”

So, the story is extremely corny. It features a whiny, know-it-all kid who finds this older robot and repairs him back to life. The writers find it important not to tell the audience what or how robot boxing came into existence until 30 minutes into the movie. The story is one you have seen before where hugh jackman agrees to take care of his orphaned son for a time and then becomes best of friends and then loses him. The kid ends up teaching hugh about life and reminds him of the joy of boxing. At no point, does the story develop a decent plot and you know what is going to happen. The evil characters aren’t developed and it appears more like the writers argued about who should be the villain and they couldn’t agree so they let three different characters be it and it doesn’t end up working.

The boxing takes on a script much like Rocky 4 with Ivan Drago and the big, bad nothing can stop this robot that seems invincible. But with an ending much like that of Rocky 1, the real winner is clear. The writers tried to bring life to a robot that was supposed to feel and appears to feel at times, but they forgot that part and it gets lost.

Overall, if you want to turn off your brain for 2 hours and waste time or learn about the seedy underworld of our future sport, this is for you. We had more fun laughing at it and being amazed at what is made into movies nowadays.


so, we picked this movie up the other day at redbox. we were at the grocery store already, plus we needed to return another movie that we watched (tintin). redbox at the time didn’t have any of the shows we were wanting, but matt brought up that he had been wanting to see real steel…he labeled it as a “robot” movie. in my head this meant transformers, save the earth type thing. somehow it also became labeled in my head as a “superhero” movie, which matt had to correct me on, because it is totally not that either. boy, was i way off.

it only took about 30 minutes into the movie for me to figure out that 1) this movie takes place in the future, 2) it is about robots, 3) its about robot boxing?! what?! i had no idea that this was the subject matter. i thought these robots would be slaying evil and protecting planet earth…not destroying each other for sport.

once i understood the subject, it became a lot more entertaining. this would not have been my first choice for movies, but i’ve put matt through a number of movies that probably wouldn’t have been his first choice either. overall though, while the storyline was good, well-intentioned i think, but it didn’t blow us away either.

learning life lessons from red box and real steel,

matt & rachel


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