Gritty fight film makes Aussie Joel a contender - Warrior (M)

THAT distinctive masculinity that has made so many Australian actors a casting choice for American filmmakers has proven to be a career-turning moment for many of them.

Warrior may well prove to be that moment for Joel Edgerton, and not merely because he strips off to go head to head in no-holds-barred mixed martial arts bouts. It’s also the way he brings to life Brendan Conlon, a dedicated high school teacher in Pittsburgh supporting a family with difficulty. Paying the mortgage has become problematic.

Coincidentally, his long-gone brother Tommy (Hardy) has turned up on the doorstep of their father’s house. There’s no love lost between Tommy and father Paddy (Nolte). 

Paddy’s history of alcohol abuse has left Tommy with a bitter taste in his mouth, not just towards his father – there’s resentment towards Brendan as well. Paddy is also persona non grata with Brendan and his family, presumably because&nbsp