Directed by: Bennett Miller Written by: E. Max Frye and Dan Futterman
Mark has always lived under his brother's, David, shadow. They are both Olympic champions but David is the center of attention. Mark is invited to get free 1st rate trainig for the next Olympic Games.
- MARK - (hero)
- JOHN DU PONT (mentor)
- DAVID (ally)
Milestones (FIRST ACT):
- Ordinary World: Mark lives in the shadow of his brother. They are both golden medal for olympic wrestling and live ordinaries lives in the suburb.
- Meeting the Mentor/Call to Adventure: Mark receives a phone call inviting him to talk with John du Pont. They meet and John offers him the opportunity to get high level training, be paid for it and get financial support.
Milestones (SECOND ACT):
- Crossing the First Threshold: Mark tries to convince David to come to du Pont with him but he refuses. Mark goes alone.
- Set of Trials: Mark has a hard practice and goes to the World Competition. He wins.
- Making Ally: David is there all the time taking care of Mark. He supports him during the World finals, give tips and stay in touch to check everything is alright.
- Making Ally: Mark starts a close relationship with John du Pont. They stay together all the time, use coke, have fun. du Pont tells David they are friends and take him to a conference where Mark has to read a speech of how du Pont is like a father to him. Time passes and
- Making Enemy: du Pont slaps Mark because he is not training enough. du Pont brings David to the training center. Mark is not happy with David's presence again. He used to be the center of attention and now David took it again from him.
- Atonement with the Father (Mother - John du Pont): du Pont wrestles in a amateur league and wins (Mark bribes the judges). He shows himself to his mother who rejected him. She visits the gym later, he tries to make her feel proud of him. She leaves.
- Love in the Underworld/Approaching the Inmost Cave: Mark eats a large tray of food because of the fight stress. He is 20 pounds over the limits for the fight and David is the one who helps him to reduce water weight minutes before the deadline.
- Crossing the Second Threshold (du Pont's Belly of the Whale): The mother of du Pont dies. du Pont releases all her horses.
- Crossing the Second/Return Threshold (Mark): Mark goes to David and ask him to leave the du Pont's house soon. Mark is again closer to his brother and away from du Pont.
- Crossing the Second Threshold (David): David understands during the documentary shooting the pressure and weirdness of du Pont. He comes to him and makes his demands in order to stay with the team.
- Belly of the Whale: Mark loses the fight, he moves out from du Pont's house. Mark and David get separated for a while. du Pont kills David.
Milestones (THIRD ACT):
Crossing the Return Threshold: Mark turns to be a UFC fighter.
Reward/Freedom to Live: Final statements, black screen, that says du Pont went to jail and on the present time Mark teaches wrestling
Final Feedback: The movie seems to abruptly end or skip steps like the Inmost Cave, Resurrection with the Elixir and the Ultimate Boon. It also seems to not have any Meeting with the Goddess. Mark is the main character/hero but du Pont and David get very important roles during the second part of the second act while Mark is not on screen. They are heroes of their few scenes. I wonder if in this special case the Belly of the Whale could also be the movie's Ultimate Boon, since the character of du Pont is very mentally affected. In this case points 8, 9 and 10 would be the Belly of the Whale and Return Threshold. The film's length is 130 minutes and spends most of it in the second act which brought to me the feeling of a slow paced/boring story piece. The audience images the Ordeal/Ultimate Boon of Mark is winning the Olympics again but it is really stay close to his brother.