If you’ve ever seen a fight, you know they always involve a lot of wrestling and swearing, and are usually over within 30 to 45 seconds, and sometimes less. And that the combatants are always winded and whipped at the end.
The film was James Gray‘s The Yards, co-written by Gray and Matt Reeves. I remember telling Phoenix during a chat at the 2005 Toronto Film Festival how much I admire the choreography here, and his telling me that he and Wahlberg worked it out together, being careful to make it look unrehearsed. I didn’t recognize Charlize Theron in this scene — did anyone?