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Every director has a series of difficulties they have to overcome. Jeremy Borash, a big name in wrestling, had to fight a couple of big ones in making Forever Haardcore, the story of legendary 90s wrestling promotion ECW. Paul Heyman, the single most important person to the promotion, was unavailable. Footage from ECW itself was held by the WWE. There were FanCams shot by RF Video, and those may well have been unavailable for various reasons. It also had an up-hill battle with me personally, as I was around, watching ECW every week, reading the sheets and calling the hotlines, going to the shows (I was at the Mass Transit incident which was covered in the doc) and talking to various folks in the biz. I think I started writing for FanboyPlanet in this period as well.
Still, this is a really interesting doc.
Told almost entirely through interviews and still photos, Forever Hardcore is the story of ECW as told to fans of the Mat Arts, and those who understand a thing or two about how wrestling works. This is a smart mark's type of doc, and it tells the story well, largely by looking at individuals who shaped the company (with a focus on Paul Heyman, Terry Funk, Raven, Shane Douglas, Sandman, and Sabu) and some of the major events. Having some knowledge of the time and the company meant that I knew there was a lot missing, like any mention of Tajiri or Masato Tanaka, or various others. The entire start of the promotion which won't bother most folks, but I'm a giant Eddie Gilbert mark, and the end is just sorta there, not getting the time that even New Jack's balcony jump injury got.
Frankly, if you're not a major wrestling fan, this is not a documentary for you. The techniques are pretty basic, there are long periods of talking heads, and the sound work is average. This is not a film that Documentary fans will flock to , but smart wrestling fans will find the stories great. The WWE-produced ECW docs are much more dynamic, but the brutal honesty and care taken to not flinch from heavy matter, make this a film worth watching.
Klaus at Gunpoint
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