2 Stars
Year Released: 2002
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 81 minutes
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I fell for it at first. Got sucker punched, if you will, fooled into believing that “2 Birds with 1 Stallone: The Life Story of Lou Benedetti” was actually a documentary.
Not so, however, as Lou Benedetti (director Bret Carr), AKA Lou-Lou the Stuttering Boxer, is actually a fictional character with a speech defect that’s as debilitating as his uppercut. It doesn’t hamper him too much in the ring where, under the watchful eye of his sleazy manager Sy (Ernie Mingione), Lou can let his fists do the talking. But when a brain aneurysm cuts his boxing career short, the upbeat but uneducated young fighter is left without a way to earn a living. His best shot seems to be as a fight trainer, except that his persistent stutter, more pronounced when he’s agitated, prevents him from communicating the skills he knows by instinct to his young charges.
Attacking the problem the way he used to go after his opponents in the ring, Lou learns as much about living life outside the ring as he does about how not to stutter.
It’s hard not to like Lou, even when you don’t really know for sure just what the hell this movie’s really about. The film also has an interesting structure to it, what with Lou’s intermittent, pseudo-documentary appearances as a motivational speaker scattered throughout.
Unfortunately for “2 Birds…” what Lou has to say just isn’t all that interesting, even when he says it without the stutter. Lou’s journey is as cliche-ridden as the seedy nature of boxing as shown here. More an intriguing character study that’s better suited as a dramatic monologue than a feature film, “2 Birds…” swings for the jaw, but winds up mostly shadow boxing instead.

Posted on November 23, 2002 in Reviews by

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