Grudge Match Movie Review: Are You #TeamDeNiro or #TeamStallone?

Grudge Match Movie Review: Are You #TeamDeNiro or #TeamStallone?

When in Manila, Robert De Niro and Sylvester Stallone brings us back to the ringside in the comedy-drama movie, Grudge Match.  Robert De Niro and Sylvester Stallone play the role of two boxing rivals whose fighting feud is still on after 3 decades. 


In De Niro’s corner, Billy “The Kid” McDonnen is a happy old man who owns a car dealership and diner club. On the other side of the ring is Stallone playing Henry “Razor” Sharp who is a struggling construction worker in a shipyard.  

A visit by a promoter, Dante Slate Jr. (Kevin Hart), changes the lives of these two former light heavyweight boxers, though. An invitation to record a motion capture of their fighting moves for a video game sounds pretty harmless. However, when Razor and Kid meet face-to-face once again – even after 3 decades and not even in the boxing ring, but in the studio – tension builds and the first punch is thrown. 

While the two were dressed in green wrap-overalls complete with sensory bulbs, throwing punches at each other – the production staff found the scene so entertaining (the same way we did!) that they ended up recording videos and uploading it in Youtube. Like any interesting, rare and exclusive video, their first unofficial boxing fight became viral. This gave these two retired boxers instant celebrity status, giving Slate the idea to organize the final boxing fight: Grudge Match.


My Grudge Match Movie Review

Grudge Match was an entertaining movie, which lasted a little more than 2 hours, with only less than 10 minutes seeing the Kid and Razor fight in the boxing ring. The expectation was that the movie would bring more punches, uppercuts and boxing moves from these two veteran actors, which would be a pain to watch.

Seeing Grudge Match is like seeing an old Stallone movie – with the same acting style and dialogue delivery. Interestingly, his ways on-screen gave a feeling of nostalgia that a lot of the audience will be able to relate to if they still remember his good ol’ Rambo and Rocky films. De Niro, on the other hand, reinvented himself in this film. There is still some debate in my head as to whether accepting this role will do his career any good; but considering the roster of actors in Hollywood, only De Niro can really portray such an annoying, bashful boxing retiree. 

The love angle and personal conflicts confused me at times, but then maybe, that is something that only seniors who are (still) in-love with their true love can relate to. Just don’t miss  the funny punches and punchlines. Sportsmanship, family values, and taking responsibility are just some of the themes rolled into this comedy film. 


His Grudge Match Movie Review

Grudge Match was mostly pleasant and harmless entertainment with the obvious purpose of  rekindling people’s memories of Rocky Balboa and Raging Bull.

However, due to the fact that it actually stars Robert de Niro and Sylvester Stallone, stars of the said movies, one can’t help but feel uncertain to watch these icons be asked to deliver sometimes-funny-but-mostly-sloppy humor. More than a tribute to those iconic characters, Grudge Match felt more like a reminder that it’s better to just remember these legends as they were. I feel that the story itself was uncertain at times – trying to categorize the movie as a family-fest or R- rated, slapstick comedy or drama.

At almost 2 hours, what might keep the audience in their seats is the anticipation toward these seniors’ comebacks, plus the fact that De Niro (70) and Stallone (67) have done an incredible job keeping their bellies trim and tight. It also helps that a lot of us, Filipnos are such fans of boxing.

The Grudge Match

Movie Review by Ruth dela Cruz and Ralph Jacob



If you are a fan of boxing films, but don’t want to see blood, cuts and broken legsGrudge Match is something you must see. Bring your dad and your grandpa on a movie date!


When in Manila, are you #TeamDeNiro or #TeamStallone?

Grudge Match is now showing in Manila by Warner Bros. Philippines.

Grudge Match Movie Review: Are You #TeamDeNiro or #TeamStallone?


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