Writer: Paddy Considine (Screenplay)
Starring: Paddy Considine, Jodie Whittaker, Paul Popplewell, Brendan Ingle, Tony Pitts, Matt Insley, Anthony Welsh
Plot: Boxer Matty Burton suffers a serious head injury during a fight. This is the story about the impact on his marriage, his life, and his family.
Tagline – A snapshot into the life of a struggling boxer
Runtime: 1 Hour 32 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Sensational and Eye Opening
Story: Journeyman starts as Matty Burton (Considine) has finally won middleweight boxing championship, he now has everything with his wife Emma (Whittaker) and new born baby Mia, he is preparing for his first defence of his title against the undefeated Andre Bryte (Welsh) who believes Matty is just a lucky champion.
After Matty wins the fight he returns home to celebrate with Emma, only to collapse from a head injury that he suffered during the fight, he has suffered a serious brain injury. After the operations, Matty isn’t the man he once was, needing Emma to help him around the house with everyday activities
Thoughts on Journeyman
Characters – Matty Burton is a champion boxer, he has spent his career working up to the title and now he has it, he must prepare to defend it and defend it he does. This fight leaves him with a brain injury, which sees everyday function gone, he can’t remember how to do the basics of everyday life and is left feeling helpless, acting out against his wife who is trying to help him. Emma is Matty’s wife, she has always supported his career and with this new injury, she must adapt to life with his brain injury, she is also trying to raise their daughter, with Matty unable to help the way he once did, leaving her in the difficult situation of who she can give more time and care too. Jackie and Richie are the friends from the ring, they start by staying away, but they turn into the only one that can help Matty rediscover himself.
Performances – Paddy Considine gives us a career best performance, where you see him as a nice guy that must deal with such a sudden change and the pain it causes him is shown on every expressions, he gives us. Jodie Whittaker is wonderful in the supporting role which sees her needing to remain strong through the film. Paul Popplewell and Tony Pitts complete the main cast where they are all both great supporting performers.
Story – The story here follows a boxer that wins his title defence only to suffer a serious brain injury that makes everyday of his life difficult as he must relearn how to do the basics and must prove he is safe enough to raise a baby around. This is one of the most eye-opening stories you will see, it does show the danger in boxing and how suddenly a punch could change a career and life forever, even in a competitive situation. We don’t focus too much on the boxing, only the aftereffects which shows the difficult early days, weeks or months on the road to recover and how that person might never be fixed, only able to learn to live with their injuries. This is one for the boxing fans to watch or any sports or even anyone that wants to see how difficult brain injuries can be on a family.
Sports – The sports side of the film shows us how the boxing can effect the lives of the competitors when it comes to brain injuries, we do only see one fight, but it is the routine of boxing which helps recovery process.
Settings – The film is set in the midlands, it does put us in a realistic boxing community, instead of a flashy rich home like we often see in boxing movies.
Final Thoughts – This is a wonderful look at how boxing can change a life through injury and how people need to learn to adapt to the change in life.
Overall: Paddy Considine gives a career best.