The bumpy road to success as a mixed martial arts fighter is ambiguously investigated in this amateurish documentary by the directing/editing team of Michael Tucker and Petra Epperlein. The story is set in small-town Louisiana where MMA circuit fight promoter/trainer Gill “the Thrill” Guillory provides for his family with a grassroots carnival-style knack for attracting family audiences to the notoriously bloody bouts. The story wants to gravitate around Dustin Poirier, a scrappy MMA fighter attempting to compensate for scars left behind by an abusive father. Yet, the movie looses focus on Poirier as its most charismatic subject. Instead, it grinds into a forced ending that leaves the audience hanging. Fans of MMA fighting might find interest in some of the minutiae of the violent sport, but there isn’t enough storyline to satisfy more demanding viewers.
Not Rated. 85 mins. (C-) (Two Stars - out of five/no halves)
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