Stitch and Bear

A long-running Irish blog with reviews of the best restaurants in Dublin and throughout Ireland. Some wine and cocktails thrown in for good measure!

Saturday, May 23, 2009


Channing Tatum plays the part of Shawn, a young man from Alabama making a living by selling bootleg DVDs and books on the streets of New York. When hustler Harvey (Terrence Howard) witnesses Shawn defend himself in a streetfight, he takes him under his wing and introduces him to the underground, bare-knuckle scene. When Shawn wins his first fight through a lucky fluke, you are left wondering where this film is taking you. Is he destined for success, or are we being sold an old nag masquerading as a stallion?

The fine performances by the cast (Tatum, Howard and Zulay Henao) give this film a lot more class than the script deserves. Howard shines as Harvey, the hustler who is trying to establish himself after years of trying, while the stunning Zulay Henao is great as the initially reluctanct single mother love interest. I think that Channing Tatum has a great career ahead of him, if only he can break free of the semi-moronic persona that he appeared to adopt here. I genuinely could not tell if the character of Shawn was meant to be 'special' or not. Additionally, for a film based on bare-knuckle fighting, the fight scenes are annoyingly hard to watch.

Overall, I'm unconvinced.

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