USA, 2008, 99 minutes
Tue, May 6 / 9:15 / Kabuki / REDB06K
David Mamet enlivens the real-life Fight Club of UFC and MMA (mixed martial arts) with his trademark con games, plot twists and male camaraderie (and competition) in his newest mind-bender, a crowd-pleasing action movie that he describes as a samurai film in the tradition of Akira Kurosawa. In the semi-seedy, macho realm of the West L.A. fight scene, bouncers, cops, ex-cons and ex-Marines grapple to get their piece of the American dream. Some do it honorably, others less so. Mike Terry (Chiwetel Ejiofor, Dirty Pretty Things) leads an honorable life as a jiu-jitsu trainer; able to kill if necessary, he chooses to teach, train and live peacefully with his wife Sondra (Alice Braga). A modern-day samurai who has given up battle, Mike soon finds himself in a whole new world when he meets Hollywood superstar Chet Frank (Tim Allen) and the sceneís sleazy promoters, powerbrokers and hangers-on. Forced to reenter the ring, Mike must decide when to fight, and for what. This territory is all Mametís: profanity-slinging men fighting, with words or fists, for control, advantage or merely to survive. (Mamet is also a jiu-jitsu practitioner himself and a self-confessed UFC addict.) House of Games with gloves off and feet flying, Redbelt also features UFC/MMA stars Randy Couture and Enson Inoue, along with Mamet regulars Joe Mantegna and Ricky Jay. The con is indeed on, but so is the fight.
Sponsored by SAGIndie.