Wrestlers have been performing in Hollywood ever since… well, ever. However some of their performances have been so dreadful this website even dedicated a list to them. We decided then that the reason most movies-starring-wrestlers were godawful was because they take their stars outside their natural environment – like the Scorpion King, Marine trilogy and *shudder* Suburban Commando.
This list will pay tribute to the best Hollywood movies that are actually concerned with the fine and noble sport of pro-wrestling. Remember that David Arquette movie that almost single-handedly destroyed WCW? Roddy Piper’s “timeless classic” that defined the Rock ‘n’ Wrestling era? Or when Hulk Hogan’s on-screen appearances didn’t involve ramming another man’s wife? No? Then take a trip down memory lane with the 7 greatest wrestling movies in history.
Note: This list only includes films which relate to the sport of professional wrestling, and shall not include non-wrestling titles produced by WWE Studios. Films about amateur wrestling and wrestling documentaries are also not included.
7. Ready to Rumble
Director: Brian Robbins. Starring: David Arquette, Diamond Dallas Page.
This Dumb and Dumber-inspired comedy is perhaps best known today for being the background to David Arquette’s infamous run as WCW Champion which coincided with the film’s release.
The plot is equally disastrous. Two stoner buddies, Gordie and Sean, attend a WCW Nitro live event and witness their favourite wrestler, Jimmy “The King” King, lose in a screwjob match against Diamond Dallas Page. On the way home, the pair gets involved in a car wreck and decide this is a “sign” that they should make “The King” champion again. Hilarity ensues. Sort of.
While Ready to Rumble is not as good as the other wrestling movies on this list, it certainly isn’t as bad as critics suggest. (USA Today writer Susan Wloszczyna called it “A pile driver to the brain”. Ouch.) In fact, the film is quite compelling when it focuses on the backstage world of professional wrestling. In the opening scenes, for example, a rogue booker convinces DDP to “shoot” during a WCW title match – a reference to the infamous Survivor Series 1997 bout between Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels.
However, things go awry when screenwriter Steven Brill attempts to weave a prefabricated plotline around the sports entertainment setting. And there’s only so many times we can hear the jaw-dropping line “But it’s not even a pay-per-view!?” before tiring.
Overall, it was a missed opportunity. Still worth a rental though.
This article was first posted on January 29, 2013