Opens: Friday 9/9
Us Rating: *** 1/2
Just like the sport it features so prominently, this gritty drama punches, kicks and grips with all its might. In working-class Pennsylvania, two estranged brothers -- an enigmatic war hero and a cash-strapped family man (a splendid Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton, respectively) -- enter the Super Bowl of mixed martial arts.
There's a slow-but-powerful build leading to the main event as the guys battle their opponents and their hard-luck past (their verbal blows on the eve of the tournament are searing). In the end, everybody wins.