Hart rips "The Wrestler," thanks Vince
McMahon for his wrestling career - 16th February
Pro Wrestling Torch)
Former WWE champion Bret Hart had
only heard about "The Wrestler" from
colleagues and friends before recently watching
Darren Aronofsky's critically-acclaimed film.
Now, Hart believes the movie is a "dark misinterpretation"
of the wrestling business.
is most concerned about audiences walking away
from the movie thinking every story in wrestling
has a tragic ending.
film isn't so much an exposé of the wrestling
business as it really is; rather, it shows us
what a lot of people outside the business think
it is," Bret wrote in a column published
Macleans Magazine in Canada. "I'm uncomfortable
that audiences will unconsciously assume every
wrestling has-been comes to a tragic end."
as a former World champ and not a sad former wrestler,
says wrestlers will feel embarrassed "by
the film's unbalanced portrayal in which there's
no respect for our art or our dignity."
a surprising gesture, Hart also thanked Vince
McMahon for creating a mainstream platform for
wrestlers to thrive.
has given me a great life and for that I thank
Vince McMahon," Hart said. "Vince and
I have had major differences, but... it's only
fair I give the devil his due, because it's Vince
who succeeded in taking pro wrestling out of back
alleys and dingy halls like those in the movie
and made it marketable, mainstream and just plain
fun to watch."
said many wrestlers "swerve off the road"
after their careers because they don't know how
to live off the road, but not every story goes
so far off the given path, such as "The Wrestler"
the film speaks superbly to the speed bumps all
pro wrestlers navigate, I'm happy to report most
of us don't swerve off the road quite so severely,"
Hart makes some very good points here regarding
'The Wrestler'. The film shows one of the worst
case scenarios imaginable. One may may choose
to make comparisons of Randy "The Ram"
Robinson to that of Jake "The Snake"
Roberts, "Rowdy" Roddy Piper or whomever,
but not all the original WWE and WWF cast is dead.
Obviously Owen Hart's untimely death comes to
mind, however that was stunt related. Was Owen
"forced" or cornered to do the stunt,
or not, is something that has been well documented
in the past. When boundaries and pushed to extremes
that is when people can get seriously hurt or
die. I recall world renowned businessman, Sir
Richard Branson, taking a stunt fall down a high
rise building to launch a Virgin brand product
a few years ago. Richard Branson is the ultimate
boss at Virgin, so he would have had to agree
to pushing the boundaries to the extreme, and
he did get bruised up in the progress. How far
from death he was, we will never know, just as
we don't know how far pro wrestlers travel to
the line. Bret Hart is more than qualified to
speak and document his thoughts on 'The Wrestler'.
It's refreshing to see Hart and McMahon agree
on something...The WWE is not 'The Wrestler',
however the pro wrestling business does carry
one of the highest early mortality rates of any
business. John "Bradshaw" Layfield has
also made some very valid points in his commentary
about "The Wrestler". Some pro wrestlers
may have had it even worse that Randy, but thankfully
the vast majority have it much better than "The
Ram". Bret Hart, Vince McMahon and Mickey
Rourke are all champions who have survived very
different roads to be in the position they assume
today. They are all successful, whatever "successful"
is these days. They are all alive and appear happy,
and largely enjoy the respect of the masses. Here's
to Bret speaking out and defending the professional
which made him a legend.
Man Australia Profiles