Lucha: Fight, Wrestle, Struggle

Directed by Eddie Rubio | Review by Riya Saha

I saw the film only once and immediately learned of Eddie Rubio’s great passion for wrestling that goes beyond the simple fighting. No other director can bring such a brutal, yet acrobatic skill set to the screen. In ‘Lucha: fight, wrestle, struggle’ he proved his direction skills and what likely even more amazing, his practical knowledge. This film also represents a tribute from the son to his dad. After the death of his father, a Mexican luchador (pro-wrestler) Jorge returns to the gym where he grew up, facing the violence and memories he was trying to forget.
 
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It can’t be denied that Lucha is perhaps one of the best short martial arts film in recent years. Filled with tasteful fight scenes, the film awards you with an amazing experience that might even take you back to your childhood (if you loved watching fighting movies as a kid that is). There are plenty of emotional scenes as well – just like the fight scenes, the emotional scenes are mesmerizing. For instance, Jorge memorizing his childhood, how his dad forced him to learn the fight, the friendship that he shared with his brother, etc. Throughout the film, I felt that the actors were motivated to give their best. In addition to that, the brutal intentions of the gang members who want to take over the gym are shot masterfully.

The rhythm of the story is maintained through the visualization. The sweet moments spent with his brother and the tough times he spent with his dad. But exactly the hard times are the crucial element that brings the positive moments to an even higher level. The techniques of the movie were absolutely brilliant! After all it’s an Eddie Rubio movie and he is the winner of several Awards like the Festival Internacional de Cine en Guadalajara (FICG), Festival Internacional de Cine de Huesca, Guanajuato International Film Festival, Shorts Mexico, KODAK SCHOLARSHIP AWARDS (Screened only for judges), Festival Internacional de Cine de Morelia (FICM), Festival SPASM, and CAMERIMAGE International Film Festival.
 
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Mexican Lucha Libre (pro-wrestling) is not a martial art, yet it contains violent and effective elements that can be used both in a fight and in a movie. Adding up the trajectory of lucha libre in Mexican cinema became the personal goal of the director. While watching the movie I felt the director has used lucha libre from a new perspective, more colorful then in real life – with a plot that evolves in innovative ways, keeping the masks, the most lethal movements and other symbolism of sports entertainment.

The plot is obviously placed within the context of pro-wrestling and violence. But the most effective message of the story is love for your close ones, passion for what you do, struggle to live, and victory. While watching the movie I felt that all the awards are worth it. The lead actor has excelled in both action choreography and a strong emphasis on stunt work. The child actor playing Jorge’s childhood shows innovativeness with different fighting techniques. He is stubborn, a quick learner and a kid that singlehandedly defeats his father. Frankly speaking, not a single scene shot can be questioned. It’s a perfect award-winning film thanks to the director Eddie Rubio and his sense of innovation and creativity.

 

Riya Saha is a Kolkata based writer, editor, journalist and cinephile. She has completed her masters in Journalism and Mass Communication from Calcutta University and currently working as a freelance journalist. Having a great interest in world cinema made Riya join Human Lab Corporation. She is passionate about setting goals and achieving them. She enjoys reading, writing, traveling, socializing and meeting people. She is also very fond of watching International movies.