Top Five Fictional Boxers
If there is one sport that continues to earn the big bucks from the film industry, it is boxing. In real life, boxing is like an art show; showcasing the biggest names in the world for all to see. The story is concrete and the action can be full of wonder.
When it comes to the big screen, sometimes the sport can be overdramatized. What can result from it, however, is a dramatic portrayal of achievement, failure, gains and losses. A person can lose themself and relate to the character, or just feel entertained. Are there specific portrayals in the fantasy world that showcase that?
A top five list of fictional boxers is never easy, especially when limited. The very best are represented on this list, with a few surprises.
How can you not include a best character list without one of the best actors playing one? Daniel Day-Lewis’ The Boxer features Danny Flynn, an established boxer who spent 14 years in prison and is looking to “go straight” upon his release. This is during the time of violence within Ireland as a result of the Provisional IRA.
The story of a man fighting in and out of the ring for what is right can please anybody. Flynn the character is loosely based on Barry McGuigan (32-3), who was an inspiration during the time known as The Troubles.
What happens when you cast Carl Weathers as one of the most dominant boxers in movie history? A true home run.
The colorful, charismatic and “likable it makes you hate him” character of Apollo Creed helped make the Rocky movies what they are today. Creed’s confidence forces you to hate him when facing Rocky Balboa, but by the second film respect is earned. Looking for an easy fight, Creed barely beats Rocky via split decision, and loses to him in the rematch in a close affair. From there, a friendship grows.
Creed helped Rocky when Mickey died and was always there to offer his services. Some passionate boxing fans might say his death was one of the most tragic moments in cinematic history. Michael B. Jordan emulated Apollo in Creed, which brought forth a new generation of boxing fans.
Also, nobody could top his entrances.
Million Dollar Baby can pull at your heartstrings, and you will let it. Hilary Swank knocked it out of the park as Maggie Fitzgerald, a woman who uses boxing to escape the world. Down on her luck , she catches the eye of Clint Eastwood’s Frankie Dunn. Going from nothing to world title contender, her drive to be the very best is something to admire.
One theme of getting attention on female boxers is an issue that is ongoing today. Unfortunately, it is also one of the tragic films related to the sport of boxing. Fitzgerald gets her neck broken by a boxer played by a real world champion in Lucia Rijker. When the film goes through the hospital scenes, the battles all the characters go through is extraordinary.
The film ends up going through a whole series of trying to find balance and acceptance in one’s life.
Hey, the characters don’t have to be from films.
A character from Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!! game, Little Mac is considered one of the top underdogs in the world. Little Mac usually wins his fights with a star punch, a lethal power shot. Like most films, Mac must overcome the bigger stars that get more attention.
He is considered one of the top video game heroes of all time, according to GameSpot. Anyone who had a dream can relate to Little Mac, who is the ultimate good guy who hopes everything will be OK.
When taking about the ultimate underdog story, you can’t have a list without including “The Italian Stallion” himself, Rocky Balboa.
From the mean streets of Philadelphia, Rocky had that old school vibe to him; a simple guy who wanted the American Dream. Fighting in the underground, Rocky just wanted a shot by Mickey, who put him down every chance he got. Once given the opportunity to prove himself, Balboa was able to get the girl of his dreams in Adrian, while also facing the aforementioned Creed.
After losing the second fight, gaining fanfare for going the distance, Rocky won the second fight and received worldwide praise. Rocky has been through it all; he lost his two best friends in Mick and Apollo, had a kid with Adrian, sunk, came back to the top only to sink again, returned to glory and became an icon to the working class.
Let’s not also forget he helped end the Cold War. But that is for another time.