If you’re looking for that lighthearted but entertaining comedy that will leave you in a good mood, you’ve just found it. Ready To Rumble is a charming movie about two losers trying to help a former wrestling champion get back in the ring. Think of it as a dumb and funnier version of The Wrestler. This is definitely a guilty pleasure movie that requires zero brain effort and just flows off the screen. Sure, the script is a bit thin, and some jokes just don’t work but the cast is excellent and the atmosphere is uplifting. I remember watching one Sunday afternoon totally hungover and still high from last night and loving it. Since then, I watched it a couple of times, and each time I had a good time.
Ready To Rumble is also one of the few movies featuring Oliver Platt in a lead role. He usually gets these supporting, comic relief roles but here, he’s the star of the show. Just a year earlier, he played Hector Cyr in a cult classic Lake Placid. Apart from him, we’ve also got David Arquette and Scott Caan doing what they do best. And yes, this is a movie about wrestling, trying to popularize the now-defunct World Championship Wrestling (WCW). As someone who never liked wrestling, I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed this movie. I still can’t figure out exactly why.
Perhaps it was that first viewing and all subsequent ones were under its influence, who knows? What I do know is that there are a lot of people who also liked it. And that can’t be a coincidence. And if you’re a wrestling fan, you’re going to love it that much more. You’ll also have the opportunity to watch a lot of real wrestlers in action. I’m talking about Goldberg, Diamond Dallas Page, Randy Savage, and Bam Bam Bigelow. Additionally, John Cena appears as one of the extras in the gym scene before, years before he became a WWE Superstar. Yes, Ready to Rumble is a true wrestling fairy tale, a fun adventure for both kids and adults.
Gordie and Sean are best friends who are passionate about one thing and one thing only: wrestling. They work together as sewage workers and use all their free time to admire their favorite wrestler Jimmy King. This is why they were outraged when he was cheated out of his title and forced into early retirement. Determined to right this wrong they set out on an adventure to first find The King and then convince him to fight back.
What can I say, I love movies about ordinary working-class men. Just like I loved Men at Work, following two garba, oops, sanitation workers, and their adventures. Although the story here is focused more on wrestling but what can you do. Ready To Rumble is also one of the more underrated movies of the early aughts. It’s honest and straightforward and aware of its flaws and limitations. It never tries to be anything else than entertaining and I respect that.
An excellent cast made it that much more enjoyable. I mean, Oliver Platt doesn’t look like someone who’s a top wrestler but you don’t even think about that once the action starts. You just go along with it. If you’re looking for a better sports comedy do check out Kingpin starring Woody Harrelson, Randy Quaid, and Bill Murray.
Director: Brian Robbins
Writer: Steven Brill
Cast: David Arquette, Oliver Platt, Scott Caan, Rose McGowan, Joe Pantoliano, Bill Goldberg
Fun Facts: Scott Caan did all his own stunts for the movie.