If you have a weakness for butt jokes, flatulent nuns, or old ladies saying, “Bitch-slap him like the two-bit crack whore that he is,” Ready to Rumble will split your sides. Sean (Scott Caan) and Gordie (David Arquette in a familiar turn as a bug-eyed charismatic idiot) are a couple of small-town ne’er-do-wells and wrestling fanatics. After a hard day cleaning out portable toilets and driving a septic truck, a typical night for these two involves poring over some glossy wrestling magazines, slurping slushies, and regaling youngsters with stories of their hero: World Championship Wrestling titleholder Jimmy King (Oliver Platt). When King, a deadbeat turned mythical icon, is dethroned in an ambush orchestrated by the federation’s mastermind (there are no oppressive corporate conglomerates here, just a nasty man with a ponytail), Sean and Gordie take it upon themselves to nurse their beer-guzzling idol back to power. Employing a sense of humor that pubescent boys keep locked away in their ids, Rumble‘s aim is low and dirty. Not even the reliable Martin Landau, as a sadistic wrestling coach, can save this film from itself.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on April 11, 2000