Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Generation Iron Review


Generation Iron is a tremendously powerful film. Narrated by Mickey Rourke (The Wrestler), the film collects the experiences leading up the 2012 Mr. Olympia. The various personalities of world-class bodybuilders are probed; the film boasts appearances by Roelly Winklaar, Branch Warren, Dennis Wolf, Kai Greene, and Ronnie Coleman. Generation Iron provides a very intense look into the personal and training lives of each of the Olympia hopefuls. What was surprising to me was the closeness in shape and form of the top five; what was far and away Arnold’s realm in the seventies is a much more varied playing field in the tens.

A number of celebrities make an appearance in Generation Iron, including Michael Jai White (Spawn), Arnold Schwarzenegger, Lou Ferrigno and Busta Rhymes.  The contrast between the comfortable lives of those at the highest echelon of bodybuilding and the second tier is shown starkly here. While the payout for the Olympia is stellar for the first and second place winners, the lower-placed contestants still seem to struggle to make ends meet. No matter how much Phil Heath talks about talent in Generation Iron, the film showcases the sheer amount of hard work and dedication that goes into becoming a world-class bodybuilder. The hard work bleeds over into the maintenance of a healthy diet and self-promotion necessary to receive sponsorship by supplement companies.

The film is making its appearance in theaters on September 20th; make sure to check local listings for the closest theaters that are offering the film. Generation Iron does a great job in contrasting the bodybuilding industry in 2012 with the nascent community in the seventies.

Rating: 9.3/10

Generation Iron Review / 2013, Directed by Vlad Yudin / generation-iron.com/