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Customer Review

19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of Stallone's better efforts, October 20, 2003
This review is from: Fist [VHS] (VHS Tape)
This movie from the late 70s, loosely based on the life of Jimmy Hoffa, about a labor leader, Frank Kovak, who makes a Faustian bargain with the mob for which he ultimately pays the price, was done before Stallone became locked into the ironjawed superhero mode. In the early scenes of the movie, he is still able to display the qualities of charm, humor and humanity that distinguished his performance in the orginal Rocky and, further back, in The Lords of Flatbush.
Moreover, the film is graced with strong supporting performances. In particular, I would single out Tony Lo Bianco's performance as the mob boss, Babe Milano, to whom Stallone turns when the survival of his trucker's union is on the line, for its chillingly effective qualities of understated and insinuating menace, especially from an actor who I have found to be prone to overacting.
The main criticism that one could make of this effort if one references it to the life of Hoffa is that Kovak is treated as genuinely heroic instead of the corrupted person that Hoffa in fact became, for although Kovak made a deal with the mob, more specifically, Babe Milano, it is made clear that he did so only because he thought it was necessary to insure the continued existence of his union when its striking members were being beaten up by company goons, not for his personal aggrandizement. Moreover, for what it is worth, I remember reading at the time of the film's release that Stallone insisted that the character be portrayed this way. In spite of this caveat, I find Fist to be both dramatically compelling and strongly acted.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 22, 2007, 5:17:00 PM PDT
Dutch says:
Good review but I think it was "Johnny Kovak".

Posted on Feb 10, 2015, 7:17:36 PM PST
Boz says:
It was Johnny Kovac Brainiac.
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