Foxcatcher Movie Club Review

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Foxcatcher has been on my list for awhile. Especially after I saw it was coming to our theater (my workplace) I was super excited. At first hearing that Steve Carrell, Channing Tatum, and Mark Ruffalo are going to be in a movie together is pretty interesting. Almost everyone immediately asked ‘Is it a comedy’ when I tell people I want to see Foxcatcher. Nope, it is most definitely NOT a comedy. So if that is what you are wondering and are still debating to go see it know that it is not a comedy.

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Let’s get into it, OK? So brace yourself spoilers ahead.

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Everyone I talked to said this movie was slow, and that some people fell asleep! Asleep! Then one lady behind me ten minutes into the movie (I’m serious it was not even ten minutes) said it was a slow movie. It really kind of ticked me off. First because stop talking in a movie theater. Second, because how do you even know it’s a slow movie at that point? The Steve Carell character John Du Point hadn’t even been introduced yet, give it a break lady. I didn’t think it was slow. I thought at some points in the middle closer to the end it dragged on a little and they could have cut some stuff out because we already knew what we needed to know as audience members.

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Mark Shultz the character played by Channing Tatum was really an interesting one. I knew he had some psychological misfortunes and was just determined on getting the gold. In the beginning he seemed like a dedicated athlete who loved his brother and was so focused on getting the gold he didn’t have time to think of anything else. Then he gets a call from some guy saying he wants to fly him out to meet with him in person and can’t talk over the phone. Ok, this is the first sign something is up. Then when he meets the character John Du Pont (Steve Carrell) he is a strange man that believes in America and that this wealthy man is doing something of importance for America and the American people. This kind of behavior he was displaying was uncomfortable like he didn’t really understand what he was saying just that he should say it.

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Also, Steve Carrell just looks so creepy! When I saw the trailer and when I saw what Steve Carrell looked like I just had a feeling someone will be murdered in this movie. I also had no idea the story of the Shultz brothers and the Foxcatcher team. Another beautiful thing about movies is that little me learns about important real stories and real life heroes through movies. At first with Mark talking to the elementary kids and always being compared to his brother I had hoped that he wouldn’t lash out on his brother and murder him. I didn’t understand his mental stability for awhile in the film. Then I started to understand he was being manipulated. Once I met the Dave character I knew Dave was too good to be true. His character was so pure and honest and hopeful I had a feeling he would pay the ultimate price. Which he did so brutally.

Real life Shultz Brothers

Real life Shultz Brothers

The suspense was building when Du Pont was driving the car I thought that was strange and creepy how he said to start the car. After watching that documentary about himself and Mark loving him I knew he was done for either by himself or taking out another. He wanted to be Dave so I knew he would kill him. He wanted the love the brothers shared and the loyalty and respect that comes from that. It’s truly a beautiful and tragic story that was done very well on the screen. I felt the intensity like I was trapped in some wealthy psychopaths mind’s land.

Mark Ruffalo as Dave Schultz

Mark Ruffalo as Dave Schultz

Mark Ruffalo as did all the actors played Dave beautifully. He seemed like a wonderful, smart, loyal, all around guy. When I looked online at the pictures of the real life Dave and Mark and John I was blown away at how accurately they all looked in the film. Also, the Foxcatcher gym looked  exactly like the pictures online. Wow, what an awesome job the design team did for that and the actors that altered their bodies to fit their roles.

How about that relationship between John and Mark? Maybe we should start with the relationship between John and his mother. In the one scene we here her speak she says she is disgusted by wrestling and doesn’t believe it’s an upper class sport. Which is just ridiculous she seemed like a ridiculous old tyrant. It was sad though her disrespect for her son’s passion. It makes you feel for the John character and this is evident when he releases all the horses to be free like he too wants to be free from the wraths of his mother. He will never be set free he will remain in her grasps forever.

The Real Life Shultz Brothers

The Real Life Shultz Brothers

This sparks the odd relationship between Mark and John. It was a big point that Mark’s parents separated at an early age causing the boys to be missing key figures in their lives like their parents. Dave was a fatherly figure to Mark even if Mark didn’t want to accept it. This is what caused John to prey on Mark. He saw that Mark was a shadow of Dave or at least he himself believed that. He wanted to be a father and coach to Mark because he kept saying it over and over again. His obsession for Mark was out of control though I think after watching the film it’s hard to believe that John wasn’t in love with Mark or obsessed with him maybe in a sexual manner. I read that the real Mark Shultz didn’t like this implication and was angered at the movie for suggesting it but I mean you have to wonder as an audience member why this man was so crazy for Mark. Why he was so obsessed with Foxcatcher? It could be he was just mentally ill but I think he was gay. It doesn’t mean Mark was or is it means this man was obsessed with him and probably physically attracted to him.

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 I think it was weird they all moved on the creepy compound. Even if he worked there why would he have to live there I would never want to live and work on someone else’s property like that. I mean I know he’s wealthy but still CREEPY.

It was really beautiful at the end of the film when Mark gets up to go into the rink and he stands tall with those broad shoulders ready for battle with the smoke billowing around him and the crowd cheering. He looks like a hero. He is a hero. I loved the film and loved the two brothers. From looking online at the pictures of this story the real pictures it looks like it was portrayed very well. As an outsider who didn’t know this story until I saw the film I will forever be a Shultz brother fan. I think this story was told well and told with purpose. It still left a sense of hope at the end with Mark going into the rink not for wrestling but it still represents that life keeps going on and that you can still live a fulfilling life even after trauma. Mark and Dave Shultz are American Heroes this film shows me. I loved it!

What are your thoughts on Foxcatcher? Start a discussion!

xo Syd

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