A biopic of the inspiration for Rocky starring Liev Schreiber, Elisabeth Moss and Ron Perlman should have at least been a wide release. However, I missed Chuck in its limited release and only caught it on Blu-ray, a few weeks late at that (sorry ‘bout that).
It’s not going to go down in cinema history but it’s a solid movie. Schreiber is charismatic as Chuck Wepner, a schmoozer and womanizer even before his notoriety. He enjoys the bump of celebrity among people who’ve heard Stallone based Rocky on him, but it’s not life changing. If anything, people expect him to be set for life when in reality nothing’s changed.
The film maintains a good balance of Wepner’s struggles with Hollywood, his personal life and his boxing career. Wepner’s bout with Muhammed Ali looks both like a real boxing match and the classic boxing movies.
Chuck was filmed with a ‘70s style, meaning hyper saturated film look. I actually don’t know if it was shot on film or if this is a digital effect. The credits say Panavision but Panavision has digital too. It looks great in HD on Blu-ray.
The only bonus feature is only three minutes long, but at least we get to see Schreiber talk about playing Chuck Wepner.