As CAGE RAGE continues the second step on my stairway to Cage heaven was Francis Ford Coppola’s Rumble Fish. A stylish black-and-white street gang movie. Cage only provides support here as the lead roles are taken by Matt Dillon and an unrecognisable, young Mickey Rourke. Dillon plays Rusty James a character who is misunderstood by both his older brother (The Motorcycle Boy, Rourke) and his father (Dennis Hopper). Rusty James lives constantly in the shadow of his elders, his brother is some kind of legend on the street, but whenever Rusty James tries to be like him it goes drastically wrong.
Shot entirely in black-and-white, until a few flashes of colour at the very end the best thing about this movie is how it looks. There are a number of outstanding fight scenes where some of the shots will get any movie fan excited. The story’s an intriguing one as well and while the main idea of the plot is fairly run-of-the-mill the way events pan out is clever and gives the movie an unexpected emotional kick. The performance from Dillon is strong and leaves you wondering why he’s only really gone on to star in mediocre cinema, he’s both believable and sympathetic as the insecure little brother and you really feel for him when he is belittled by his older brother. Rourke is something special here too. As for Cage, though, there really is not quite enough of him, when he is there he’s great and he is involved in the odd fight scene but once the film reaches its mid-point he is more-or-less out of the story altogether, which is greatly disappointing.
As a film I found Rumble Fish an enjoyable watch, not without its flaws but artistically filmed and very well acted creating an emotional and gripping story with an empowering end. For CAGE RAGE it, sadly, doesn’t give us quite what we’re wanting, a great shame.
CAGE RAGE rating: 2/5