Mickey Kelly, a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, leaves those he loves to participate in an illegal MMA tournament.
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I have always said and will say that sports dramas (especially those based on real events) are almost my favorite genre and will always remain, along with, of course, detective thrillers.
This film ‘Born to Champion’ certainly attracted me with its theme of the world of martial arts, it is also noteworthy that the UFC was mentioned in the film (at the moment a very popular and successful American organization for mixed martial styles), but at that time (nineties ) The UFC was just beginning its existence and did not gain as much popularity (until 2006). But the small mention of the UFC in this film was as a background in order to somehow be based on real facts, and against this background we were told the story of Mickey Kelly (played by Sean Patrick Flanery), a former Marine and a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu … Mickey himself never fought, because he did not consider it necessary for himself, so he only deals with coaching, but inside him there was always this passion and fire for performing in fights. Also, love suddenly burst into his life in the face of the beautiful Layla (played by Katrina Bowden) and the birth of a child made Mickey decide to participate in a mixed martial arts tournament in order to earn money for the family and not work constantly as a bouncer in a bar.
The first thing I liked about the film was the strong emotional and spiritual connection between Mickey and Layla, the actors showed their feelings well and there was no fake or pretense in their acting, they were natural and sincere.
Second, this is Brazilian jiu-jitsu, in general jiu-jitsu – this is the main message and motive of the film (I myself am not a big fan of this discipline), it all started with it. And Mickey is a master of his craft, in the film he showed excellent technique and skill (and even more so the actor Sean Patrick Flanery himself has a brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu). The film also shows the opposition between jiu-jitsu and striking technique, when as some just want to break and physically cripple their opponent, the other (Mickey), on the contrary, uses his technique so as not to injure his opponent, but at the same time break him morally …
Also interesting is the fact that the film also shows its respect for Jiu Jitsu and forces others to show respect for the discipline. I think that all those who are fond of mixed styles after watching this film will be able to look differently at Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and reconsider their views, because Jiu-Jitsu is primarily a technique, style and skill, and subtle and very clear details.
I will also note in a small role Dennis Quaid, who at first showed himself as a negative character, but towards the end of the film he still showed himself on the other side.
Bottom line, Born to Champion is a really worthwhile sports drama with good actors and a good plot base, and Brazilian Jitsu Jitsu is a rare highlight of the film.
Codec: HEVC / H.265 (63.8 Mb/s)
Resolution: 4K (2160p)
Aspect ratio: 2.39:1
Original aspect ratio: 2.39:1
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
English: Dolby Digital 5.1
German: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1