Real Steel (Review)

Real Steel

Directed by Shawn Levy
real steel
Is Real Steel a Reel Steal? I don’t even know what that sentence would mean, but the answer is yes. Yes it is.
real steel
Since that opening makes no sense, let’s delve deeper into the robotic heart of Real Steel. Loosely based on a short story by Richard Matheson (author of I am Legend and Star Trek‘s “The Enemy Within”) that has already been made into a Twilight Zone episode, Real Steel instead goes more Rocky and more father and son bonding movie. And there’s also the Rock’em Sock’em Robots.
real steel
As every review will mention the Rock’em Sock’em Robots, I might as well, because that’s what everyone thought when they saw the first trailer. And that’s about all I knew going in to the free advanced screening (once again, TarsTarkas.NET sells out!) So it is pretty good with the fighting robots, except the fact the film is about a father and son bonding, the training robots to fight aspect is just flavor. And to sell toys. Toys that are similar enough that well-meaning grandparents will buy them instead of Transformers. Well, the world needs Go-Bots. But Real Steel is beyond Go-Bots. Real Steel is a flick with some heart. A flick where robots who don’t talk and are controlled remotely by humans have more personality that most of the robots in Transformers. A flick where someone cared about the story almost as much as the robot fighting scenes. It isn’t a great flick, but it isn’t terrible.
real steel

Charlie Kenton (Hugh Jackman) – A former boxer who is now a gambling robot fighter that owes money all over the place. Charlie continues to make dumb and hurtful choices until he finally learns to be a man thanks to his son and a robot.
Max (Dakota Goyo) – Charlie’s son he rarely thinks about and knows even less. Thanks to the death of his mom, he’s foisted onto Charlie for a while until his aunt and uncle can claim him (and Charlie can make some dough.) Like all kids of the future, plays video games and knows Japanese, despite looking exactly like Anakin from Episode I. Was also in Defendor.
Bailey Tallet (Evangeline Lilly) – Daughter of Charlie’s former trainer and current runner of the now-deserted gym (no one works out anymore because of robot fights!) Makes ends meet by fixing robot fighters.
Atom (Animatronics, CGI, and mo-capped Eddie Davenport) – Found in a junk pile, Atom is an old sparring bot fixed up and sent off to fight because no one will see it coming. Despite never talking and not even being alive, he’s the best cinematic robot of the year.
Zeus (Animatronics, CGI, and mo-capped Eddie Davenport) – Can’t you tell he’s evil? He looks like old school Megatron and he’s black and green, how much more evil can you be? The undefeated champ.

real steel
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