A broad comedy that derives its setting, characters, tone, and level of sophistication from the world of professional wrestling, Ready To Rumble stars AT&T pitchman David Arquette (in only a slight variation on the commercially honed screaming-idiot character that has made him a pariah) as a dimwitted wrestling fan. Arquette and celebrity offspring Scott Caan play affable wrestling fans who slavishly follow the antics of wrestler Oliver Platt. After Platt is brutally beaten and kicked out of the WCW by evil kingpin Joe Pantoliano, Caan and Arquette track down their hero, whom they discover is actually an irresponsible, alcoholic deadbeat, and attempt to get him back in shape for a big comeback match. Perhaps because it relies on the cooperation of the WCW, Ready To Rumble tries to have it both ways: It establishes early on that professional wrestling is fake and that the matches are fixed, then spends the rest of the film generally ignoring that fact. Shamelessly stealing gags from The Wedding Singer and even Mallrats, Ready To Rumble is about as daring and original as you'd expect from a film with a screenplay written by Steven Brill, the scribe behind all three Mighty Ducks films. In its attempts not to offend wrestling fans or the wrestlers who make brief, bland appearances, Ready To Rumble is plodding, obvious, toothless, and unfunny.
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