31st January 2020
Doors open: 7.30pm
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Ware Arts Review
The first ever co-production between World Wrestling
Entertainment and the United Kingdom’s Film4, Fighting With
My Family is a fun fish-out-of-water biopic about a girl with a
It is written and directed by Stephen Merchant thet was inspired
by a documentary of the same name, about the WWE Divas
Champion Paige and her feisty Norwich wrestling clan.
The Office co-creator zooms into the self-doubt and familial
obligations that drive young grappler Saraya "Paige" Knight
(a brilliant performance by Florence Pugh) to go to Florida in the hopes of becoming the WWE's next superstar – even though that means effectively abandoning her brother and ring partner Zak (Jack Lowden), who didn’t make the cut.
Pugh holds the screen confidently as the conflicted Saraya, who’s been wrestling since she was 13 but feels like an impostor the moment she arrives in America. Merchant and cinematographer Remi Adefarasin make excellent use of the actor’s tiny frame both in and out of her matches, helping us understand why Saraya would be constantly comparing herself to the overbuilt athletes around her. And Lowden offers a nice broad-strokes study in Zak’s resentment at being left behind.
Nick Frost and Lena Headey have a great time dressing down as their over-invested parents, Vince Vaughn does his thing as a crusty trainer with a heart of gold, and Dwayne Johnson shows up as himself – twice! – to impart valuable life lessons.
A rather great but bittersweet comedy and a true story
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