“American Fighter,” directed by Shaun Paul Piccinino, is an exhilarating and well-crafted film. It is available in digital and On Demand on May 21, and it stars George Kosturos, Bryan Craig, Tommy Flanagan, and Sean Patrick Flanery. Digital Journal has the scoop.
In this gritty action tale, the protagonist and male hero is a young wrestler Ali Jahani (George Kosturos), who competes in the world of underground fighting in the United States, in an effort to raise money for his ill mother in Iran. The question is whether or not he will survive his next match.
Ali’s good friend, Ryan (Emmy winner Bryan Craig), helps him along the way. Craig proves that he can be witty and versatile in this role. Tommy Flanagan (“Sons of Anarchy”) gives a controlled and commanding performance as McClellen.
Sean Patrick Flanery is superb as Duke, the troubled handler, who feels sorry for Ali and takes him under his wing and trains him to become a fierce competitor. While he may come across as drunk at first, he is full of wisdom. Flanery’s scenes with Kosturos truly are the heart and soul of the film, they will hit viewers like a shot in the heart.
Ali Afshar served as a producer of the movie. The music in the film by Jamie Christopherson is quite stirring and nostalgic, especially “Highway to Glory,” which was co-penned by Christopherson and Max Carl, and performed by Carl.
The movie underscores such values as perseverance, empathy, hard work, and perspicacity, which are food for thought for everyone.
Overall, “American Fighter” is a captivating martial arts film that is relevant and relatable. George Kosturos delivers a knockout and transformative performance as Ali, while Bryan Craig is remarkable as Ryan, who is the voice of reason.
The same holds true for Sean Patrick Flanery, who triumphs as Duke. It has a lot of heart to it, and it was the perfect sequel to Alex Ranarivelo’s “American Wrestler: The Wizard.” Beautiful work all around.
Compliments to director Shaun Paul Piccinino for his solid direction and vision for this movie. “American Fighter” is an exceptional film that is worth more than just a passing glance, and it garners an A rating. Bravo.