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Million Dollar Baby

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Million Dollar Baby
Million Dollar Baby poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byClint Eastwood
Produced byClint Eastwood
Albert S. Ruddy
Tom Rosenberg
Paul Haggis
Screenplay byPaul Haggis
Story byF.X. Toole
Based onRope Burns: Stories from the Corner
by F.X. Toole
StarringClint Eastwood
Hilary Swank
Morgan Freeman
Music byClint Eastwood
CinematographyTom Stern
Edited byJoel Cox
Production
company
Distributed byWarner Bros. Pictures
Release date
  • December 15, 2004 (2004-12-15)
Running time
132 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$30 million[1][2]
Box office$216.8 million[3]

Million Dollar Baby is a 2004 American sports drama film directed, co-produced, and scored by Clint Eastwood, and starring Eastwood, Hilary Swank, and Morgan Freeman. This film is about an underappreciated boxing trainer, the mistakes that haunt him from his past, and his quest for atonement by helping an underdog amateur boxer achieve her dream of becoming a professional.

Million Dollar Baby opened to wide acclaim from critics, and won four Academy Awards, including Best Picture. Its screenplay was written by Paul Haggis, based on short stories by F.X. Toole, the pen name of fight manager and cutman Jerry Boyd. Originally published under the title Rope Burns, the stories have since been republished under the film's title.

YouTube Encyclopedic

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  • Million Dollar Baby (3/5) Movie CLIP - Get Home (2004) HD
  • Maggie's Final Request - Million Dollar Baby (4/5) Movie CLIP (2004) HD
  • Million Dollar Baby (2004) Official Trailer - Hilary Swank, Clint Eastwood Movie HD
  • Million Dollar Baby: 10th Anniversary -- Your Fault -- Available February 4
  • Drama Trailer 1 - Million Dollar Baby (2004)

Transcription

All right. I'll be out in the hall. You been a good daughter, mary m. You sign that paper, it'll... Take care of your family the... The way your daddy would've wanted you to. Uh... How do you make your mark? [chuckles] Can you hold a pen? She gotta do it with her teeth, mama. Huh? You gotta put it in her mouth. Here you go, honey. Did you see the fight, mama? Honey, you know how I feel about that. I did pretty good. You lost, mary m. Ain't your fault, the way I heard it, But you lost. Don't wanna lose The rest of what you got left. [softly] there you go. What happened to you? Well, what's that supposed to mean? [chuckles] Mama, you take mardell and j.D. And get home. 'fore I tell that lawyer there that you were so worried About your welfare, you never Signed those house papers like you were supposed to. [paper crinkles] So any time I feel like it, I can sell that house From under your fat, lazy, hillbilly asses. [wheezes] And if you ever come back, that's exactly what I'll do.

Contents

Plot

Margaret "Maggie" Fitzgerald (Hilary Swank), a waitress from a Missouri town in the Ozarks, shows up in the Hit Pit, a run-down Los Angeles gym owned and operated by Frankie Dunn (Clint Eastwood), an old, cantankerous boxing trainer. Maggie asks Frankie to train her, but he initially refuses. Maggie works out tirelessly each day in his gym, even after Frankie tells her she's "too old" to begin a boxing career at her age. Eddie "Scrap-Iron" Dupris (Morgan Freeman), Frankie's friend and employee—and the film's narrator—encourages and helps her.

Frankie's prize prospect, "Big" Willie Little, signs with successful manager Mickey Mack after becoming impatient with Frankie rejecting offers for a championship bout. With prodding from Scrap and impressed with her persistence, Frankie reluctantly agrees to train Maggie. He warns her that he will teach her only the basics and then find her a manager. Other than Maggie and his employees, the only person Frankie has contact with is a local priest, with whom he spars verbally at daily Mass.

Before her first fight, Frankie leaves Maggie with a random manager in his gym, much to her dismay; upon being told by Scrap that said manager deliberately put her up against his best girl (coaching the novice to lose) to give her an easy win, Frankie rejoins Maggie in the middle of the bout and coaches her instead to an unforeseen victory. A natural, she fights her way up in the women's amateur boxing division with Frankie's coaching, winning many of her lightweight bouts with first-round knockouts. Earning a reputation for her KOs, Frankie must resort to bribery to get other managers to put their trainee fighters up against her.

Eventually, Frankie takes a risk by putting her in the junior welterweight class, where her nose is broken in her first match. Frankie comes to establish a paternal bond with Maggie, who substitutes for his estranged daughter. Scrap, concerned when Frankie rejects several offers for big fights, arranges a meeting for her with Mickey Mack at a diner on her 33rd birthday. Out of loyalty, she declines. Frankie begrudgingly accepts a fight for her against a top-ranked opponent in the UK, where he bestows a Gaelic nickname on her. The two travel to Europe as she continues to win; Maggie eventually saves up enough of her winnings to buy her mother a house, but her mother berates Maggie for endangering her government aid, claiming that everyone back home is laughing at her.

Frankie is finally willing to arrange a title fight. He secures Maggie a $1 million match in Las Vegas, Nevada against the WBA women's welterweight champion, Billie "The Blue Bear" Osterman, a German ex-prostitute who has a reputation as a dirty fighter. Overcoming a shaky start, Maggie begins to dominate the fight, but after a round has ended, Billie knocks her out with an illegal sucker punch from behind after the bell has sounded to indicate the end of the round. Before Frankie can pull the corner stool out of the way which was inappropriately placed on its side by Frankie's assistant, Maggie lands hard on it, breaking her neck and leaving her a ventilator-dependent quadriplegic.

Frankie is shown experiencing the first three of the five stages of grief: first seeking multiple doctors' opinions in denial, then blaming Scrap in anger and later trying to bargain with God through prayer.

In a medical rehabilitation facility, Maggie looks forward to a visit from her family, but they arrive accompanied by an attorney; their only concern is to transfer Maggie's assets to them. She orders them to leave, threatening to sell the house and inform the IRS of her mother's welfare fraud if they ever show their faces again.

As the days pass, Maggie develops bedsores and undergoes an amputation for an infected leg. She asks a favor of Frankie: to help her die, declaring that she got everything she wanted out of life. A horrified Frankie refuses, and Maggie later bites her tongue repeatedly in an attempt to bleed to death, but the medical staff saves her and takes measures to prevent further suicide attempts. The priest Frankie has harassed for 23 years, Father Horvak, warns him that he would never find himself again if he were to go through with Maggie's wishes.

Frankie sneaks into the gym one night, unaware that Scrap is watching from the shadows. Just before administering a fatal injection of adrenaline, he finally tells Maggie the meaning of a nickname he gave her, Mo Chuisle (spelled incorrectly in the film as "mo cuishle"): Irish for "my darling, and my blood" (literally, "my pulse"). He never returns to the gym. Scrap's narration is revealed to be a letter to Frankie's daughter, informing her of her father's true character. The last shot of the film shows Frankie sitting at the counter of a diner where Maggie once took him, and after having a homemade lemon meringue pie with her, said "Now I can die and go to heaven".

Cast

  • Clint Eastwood as Frankie Dunn, a gruff but well-meaning elderly boxing trainer.
  • Hilary Swank as Mary Margaret "Maggie" Fitzgerald, a determined, aspiring boxer trained up by Frankie Dunn.
  • Morgan Freeman as Eddie "Scrap-Iron" Dupris, Dunn's gym assistant; an elderly former boxer, he was blinded in one eye in his 109th, and last, fight.
  • Jay Baruchel as Dangerous Dillard Fighting Flippo Bam-Bam Barch or "Danger", a simple-minded would-be boxer.
  • Mike Colter as "Big" Willie Little, a boxer whom Dunn has trained for years.
  • Lucia Rijker as Billie "The Blue Bear" Osterman, a vicious, ex-prostitute boxer.
  • Brían F. O'Byrne as Father Horvak, the priest of the church which Dunn attends, who cannot stand Dunn.
  • Anthony Mackie as Shawrelle Berry, an overzealous boxer and frequent tenant of Dunn's gym.
  • Margo Martindale as Earline Fitzgerald, Maggie's selfish mother.
  • Riki Lindhome as Mardell Fitzgerald, Maggie's welfare-cheating sister.
  • Michael Peña as Omar, a boxer and Shawrelle's best friend.
  • Benito Martinez as Billie's manager
  • Grant L. Roberts as Billie's cut man, (trainer) trained Hilary Swank off screen for her Academy Award-winning role
  • Bruce MacVittie as Mickey Mack, a rival of Dunn.
  • David Powledge as Counterman at Diner
  • Joe D'Angerio as Cut Man
  • Aaron Stretch as Himself
  • Don Familton as Ring Announcer

Development and production

The film was stuck in development hell for years before it was shot. Several studios rejected the project even when Eastwood signed on as actor and director. Even Warner Bros., Eastwood's longtime home base, would not agree to a US$30 million budget. Eastwood persuaded Lakeshore Entertainment's Tom Rosenberg to put up half the budget (as well as handle foreign distribution), with Warner Bros. contributing the rest ($15 million). Eastwood shot the film in less than 40 days between June and July 2004.[1][2] Filming took place in Los Angeles and film sets at Warner Bros. Studios.[2] The term 'Million Dollar Baby' was from the nose art of a World War II Consolidated B-24 Liberator heavy bomber. Eastwood had his daughter Morgan Colette appear in a brief role as a girl who waves to Swank's character at a gas station.[4][5]

Eastwood had confidence in Swank's acting background, but upon seeing Swank's small physique, he had concerns, "I just thought, 'Yeah, this gal would be great. If we can get her trained up. If we can get a little bit more bulk on her, to make her look like a fighter'...She was like a feather. But what happened is, she had this great work ethic."[6]

Consequently, to prepare for her role, Swank underwent extensive training in the ring and weight room gaining 19 pounds of muscle, aided by professional trainer Grant L Roberts. She trained for nearly five hours every day, winding up with a potentially life-threatening staphylococcus infection. She did not tell Eastwood about the infection because she thought it would be out of character for Maggie.[6]

Box office

Million Dollar Baby initially had a limited release, opening in eight theaters in December 2004.[7] In its later wide release opening, the film earned $12,265,482 in North America and quickly became a box-office hit both domestically and internationally. It grossed $216,763,646 in theaters; $100,492,203 in the United States, and $116,271,443 overseas. The film played in theaters for six and a half months.[3]

Critical reception

The film received critical acclaim. It holds a 91% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 261 reviews, with an average rating of 8.4/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "Clint Eastwood's assured direction - combined with knockout performances from Hilary Swank and Morgan Freeman - help Million Dollar Baby to transcend its clichés, and the result is deeply heartfelt and moving."[8] It also has a score of 86 out of 100 on Metacritic, based on 39 critics, indicating "universal acclaim".[9] Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun Times gave the film four stars and stated that "Clint Eastwood's Million Dollar Baby is a masterpiece, pure and simple," listing it as the best film of 2004.[10] Michael Medved stated: "My main objection to Million Dollar Baby always centered on its misleading marketing, and effort by Warner Brothers to sell it as a movie about a female Rocky, with barely a hint of the pitch-dark substance that led Andrew Sarris of the New York Observer ... to declare that 'no movie in my memory has depressed me more than Million Dollar Baby.'"[11]

In early 2005, the film sparked controversy when some disability rights activists protested the ending. Wesley J. Smith in The Weekly Standard also criticized the film for its ending and for missed opportunities; Smith said, "The movie could have ended with Maggie triumphing once again, perhaps having obtained an education and becoming a teacher; or, opening a business managing boxers; or perhaps, receiving a standing ovation as an inspirational speaker."

Eastwood responded to the criticism by saying the film was about the American dream.[12] In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Eastwood distanced himself from the actions of characters in his films, noting, "I've gone around in movies blowing people away with a .44 Magnum. But that doesn't mean I think that's a proper thing to do". Roger Ebert stated that "a movie is not good or bad because of its content, but because of how it handles its content. Million Dollar Baby is classical in the clean, clear, strong lines of its story and characters, and had an enormous emotional impact".[13]

Some commentators[who?] criticized the fact that the phrase mo chuisle, a term of endearment meaning literally "my pulse", and generally "my darling", was misspelled in the film as Mo Cuishle, as shown on the back of Maggie's robe. It is translated in the film as "my darling, my blood", although an Irish Gaelic translation site states that it is always translated as "pulse", not as "blood".[14] The original phrase is short for a chuisle mo chroí, meaning "O pulse of my heart".[15] The film has been praised, however, for stirring renewed interest in the Irish language in the U.S.[15]

Accolades

Million Dollar Baby received the award for Best Picture of 2004 at the 77th Academy Awards. Clint Eastwood was awarded his second Best Director Oscar for the film, and also received a Best Actor in a Leading Role nomination. Hilary Swank and Morgan Freeman received Best Actress in a Leading Role and Best Actor in a Supporting Role Oscars, respectively. Joel Cox, Eastwood's editor for many years, was nominated for Best Film Editing, and Paul Haggis was nominated for the Best Adapted Screenplay award. The film was named the third "Best Film of the 21st Century So Far" in 2017 by The New York Times.[16]

Award Category Subject Result
Academy Award Best Picture Clint Eastwood,
Albert S. Ruddy and
Tom Rosenberg
Won
Best Director Clint Eastwood Won
Best Actress Hilary Swank Won
Best Actor Clint Eastwood Nominated
Best Supporting Actor Morgan Freeman Won
Best Adapted Screenplay Paul Haggis Nominated
Best Film Editing Joel Cox Nominated
ACE Eddie Best Editing Nominated
Amanda Award Best Foreign Feature Film Clint Eastwood Nominated
American Screenwriters Association Discover Screenwriting Award Paul Haggis Won
Art Directors Guild Award Best Contemporary Feature Film Henry Bumstead
Jack G. Taylor Jr.
Nominated
Billie Award Best Film Clint Eastwood
Albert S. Ruddy
Tom Rosenberg
Paul Haggis
Nominated
Black Reel Award Best Supporting Actor Morgan Freeman Nominated
Broadcast Film Critics Association Award Best Actress Hilary Swank Won
Best Supporting Actor Morgan Freeman Nominated
Best Director Clint Eastwood Nominated
Best Film Clint Eastwood
Albert S. Ruddy
Tom Rosenberg
Paul Haggis
Nominated
Casting Society of America Award Best Casting for Feature Film: Drama Phyllis Huffman Nominated
César Award Best Foreign Film Clint Eastwood
Albert S. Ruddy
Tom Rosenberg
Paul Haggis
Won
Chicago Film Critics Association Award Best Director Clint Eastwood Won
Directors Guild of America Award Outstanding Directing Won
Director's Guild of Great Britain Outstanding Director Nominated
ESPY Award Best Sports Movie Clint Eastwood
Albert S. Ruddy
Tom Rosenberg
Paul Haggis
Nominated
Florida Film Critics Circle Award Best Actress Hilary Swank Won
Golden Globe Award Best Actress Won
Best Director Clint Eastwood Won
Best Supporting Actor Morgan Freeman Nominated
Best Motion Picture - Drama Clint Eastwood
Albert S. Ruddy
Tom Rosenberg
Paul Haggis
Nominated
Best Original Score Clint Eastwood Nominated
Grammy Award Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media Nominated
Motion Picture Sound Editors Award Best Sound Editing Alar Robert Murray
Bub Asman
David Grimaldi
Jason King
Nominated
MTV Movie Award Best Female Performance Hilary Swank Nominated
NAACP Image Award Outstanding Supporting Actor Morgan Freeman Won
National Board of Review Award Best Film Clint Eastwood
Albert S. Ruddy
Tom Rosenberg
Paul Haggis
Nominated
Best Director Clint Eastwood Nominated
Best Actor Nominated
New York Film Critics Circle Award Best Director Won
Producers Guild of America Award Best Theatrical Motion Picture Clint Eastwood
Albert S. Ruddy
Tom Rosenberg
Paul Haggis
Nominated
Phoenix Film Critics Society Award Best Actress Hilary Swank Won
Best Actor Clint Eastwood Nominated
Best Director Nominated
Best Supporting Actor Morgan Freeman Nominated
Best Film Clint Eastwood
Albert S. Ruddy
Tom Rosenberg
Paul Haggis
Nominated
Satellite Award Best Actress Hilary Swank Won
Best Adapted Screenplay Paul Haggis Won
Screen Actors Guild Award Best Actress Hilary Swank Won
Best Supporting Actor Morgan Freeman Won
Best Cast Nominated

Home media

The film was released on VHS and DVD on July 12, 2005, and all editions of the Region 1 DVD, except for the "Deluxe Edition", came with a paperback copy of the book Rope Burns: Stories from the Corner. An HD DVD release was issued on April 18, 2006.[17] The Blu-ray Disc version was released on November 14, 2006.[18] It was the first Best Picture winner released on either high-definition optical disc format in the U.S.; it and Unforgiven (also starring Eastwood and Freeman) were the only ones released in the U.S. on HD DVD prior to the first one released in the U.S. on Blu-ray, Crash.[17][18]It is also available online for downloading and streaming video rentals through Amazon, Apple's iTunes Store, Vudu and Netflix.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b Eliot (2009), p. 309
  2. ^ a b c Hughes, p. 156
  3. ^ a b "Million Dollar Baby (2004)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 6 January 2010.
  4. ^ Hughes, p. 157
  5. ^ Fold 3 WWII Crew photos
  6. ^ a b Rebecca Leung (March 2, 2005). "Hilary Swank: Oscar Gold – 60 Minutes". CBS News. Retrieved September 9, 2010.
  7. ^ Hughes, p. 160
  8. ^ "Million Dollar Baby (2004)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved 1 March 2018.
  9. ^ "Million Dollar Baby Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 27 February 2018.
  10. ^ Ebert, Roger (7 January 2005). "Million Dollar Baby". rogerebert.com. Retrieved 26 November 2007.
  11. ^ Medved, Michael. "My 'Million Dollar' Answer," OpinionJournal/Dow Jones & Company, Inc. (17 February 2005). Archived at TownHall.com.
  12. ^ The New York Times > Arts > Frank Rich: How Dirty Harry Turned Commie
  13. ^ Roger Ebert (29 January 2005). "Critics have no right to play spoiler". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 27 November 2007.
  14. ^ IrishGaelicTranslator.com. Million Dollar Baby movie
  15. ^ a b Wes Davis Fighting Words. New York Times, 26 February 2005
  16. ^ Dargis, Manohla; Scott, A.O. "The 25 Best Films of the 21st Century...So Far". The New York Times. Retrieved 8 July 2017.
  17. ^ a b Historical HD DVD Release Dates, High-Def Digest, accessed 12 March 2012
  18. ^ a b Historical Blu-ray Release Dates, High-Def Digest, accessed 12 March 2012
Bibliography

External links

This page was last edited on 25 November 2018, at 06:36
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