Hugo Weaving may just be the most versatile actor currently in Hollywood today. In The Boxer and The Bombshell, Weaving is a mobster that has control of a seedy underground set of businesses during the interwar years (teens/twenties). Paired alongside Matt le Nevez and Rose Byrne, Weaving is able to lead the film to a surprising compelling tenor. However, it is not only the performances that are turned in by the cast that makes The Boxer and The Bombshell such a solid film.
Rather, all aspects of the cinematography add to the feel of the film. Rather than telling a straightforward story, director Jonathan Ogilvie takes a Sin City tack to add proper highlighting to the film’s characters and locales. The film itself is reminiscent of Heath Ledger’s Knight’s Tale. Byrne’s affections originally are for Weaving’s mob boss character, but after seeing the virtuous boxer, all bets are off. The crux of the film surrounds whether the Bombshell (Byrne) ultimately takes up the paragon of virtue or continues to live the cocaine and alcohol-fueled life of a mob floozy.
The only weakness that I could conceivably see with The Boxer and The Bombshell would have to be the slightly soft ending of the film. I want to see an addition to this storyline (perhaps a sequel) that showcases what happens to the remaining characters in the years surrounding World War II. I believe that is could potentially be a very fertile font for a film, and would allow viewers to be completed by the events that began in The Boxer and The Bombshell. Regardless, I would have to say that The Boxer and The Bombshell is on my short list for best films of 2011.
The Boxer and The Bombshell (DVD) / 2011 Screen Media / 104 Minutes /