Directed by: Bennett Miller
Written by: E. Max Frye and Dan Futterman
Starring: Channing Tatum, Steve Carell, Mark Ruffalo, Sienna Miller
Foxcatcher is at first entrancing, particularly the enchanting choreography of an early wrestling scene between brothers Mark (Tatum) and Dave Schultz (Ruffalo), in which the actors achieve a gracefulness that seems at odds with their bulked-up forms.
Even if you think you’ve seen Carell do serious before, his coach John Du Pont is an unsettling revelation. Tatum is perfectly cast as the bottled-up Mark, yet the factors which cause his relationship with Du Pont to crumble are under-explained.
Miller’s Moneyball follow up lacks the high-gloss, high-clarity of digital, attaining a more film-like quality which, combined with cinematographer Greig Fraser’s naturalistic shooting, makes Foxcatcher stand out among many sports movies.
Ruffalo drastically upstages his shambolic leading man turn in Begin Again, and though he brings gravitas to the gob-smacking denouement he is not quite enough to enliven the film’s second half. Career-best performances are unfortunately unmatched by pacing; Frye and Futterman aren’t sure what the climax is, and Foxcatcher’s final act fails to reach the high bar of its opening hour.