***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. To each their own. I am just sharing my opinions and perspective. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 1-5. 1, of course, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being good and 5, being epic!
101 Reasons Not to Be a Pro Wrestler - 2 out of 5
You want a great documentary about behind the scenes of pro wrestling, watch Beyond the Mat and not this piece of shit.
I use to be a big fan of pro wrestling. I grew up watching the Hulk run wild and I saw Stone Cold shout his famous words about Stone Cold 3:16. I was obsessed with ECW and was a big fan of guys like Tommy Dreamer, Jerry Lynn and Rob Van Dam. However, by the time the year 2000 hit and WWE purchased WCW and absorbed ECW, the game had changed. Vince McManhon had monopolized the business and he stopped trying. He had no competition and the stories and the wrestlers being pushed became even more complacent than they had been in the past. It stopped being fun and entertaining and became boring, so I stopped watching.
I remember when I first heard of this documentary years ago and how it was suppose to be this raw, no holds barred attack on the wrestling industry. However, this documentary is insanely hard to find. But with the internet being both the greatest and worst invention ever, I was able to get my hands on a copy and after spending an excruciating 3 hours watching it, I want to give it back.
First off, the only reason this doc can be described as raw is because it is terribly made. Only a small handful of wrestlers are interviewed (mainly because most of them were all at a wrestling event the filmmaker attended) and their interviews are pretty shitty. The camera work is amateurish and looks like it was filmed on a cheap camcorder. The sound is unbearably bad and you spend the entire 3 hours of the movie lowering and raising the volume. Did the filmmakers know that you could edit this in even the most basic editing program? And speaking of editing, this movie has some of the worst I've ever seen. The interviews are sloppily pieced together with no real structure and this ends up hurting the only good thing the film has going for it.
Occasionally, the remarks made by the wrestlers (especially former ECW gansta; New Jack) are insightful and brutally honest and they make great points of the damage done to the business by greedy folks like McMahon but their points become muddled and lost in the shuffle as the film will awkwardly cut to some pointless behind-the-scenes action, watching Chyna get drunk in a parking lot or watch Vampiro film a commercial with the Insane Clown Posse (fucking commercials. How do they work?). Had the director Michael Moody took a single film class or even watched just one documentary, he could have made a masterpiece. Mic the wrestlers so we can hear them. Film some B-role so we don't have to stare at the same faces for 3 hours. Learn to edit. All these could have saved the film. Finally, Moody should have interviewed from the opposite perspective. Hearing what Rikishi, Chyna, Diamond Dallas Page, Sean O'Haire, Vampiro, Psichosis and Konnan have to think about wrestlers' unions and the WWE isn't enough. Throw in some fan perspective. Try to get Vince to talk--even the attempt and denial of an interview would have added some credibility to the documentary.
At points, this documentary is interesting. I like hearing DDP talk about his rise and his drive to keep doing what he was doing. I enjoyed hearing Sean O'Haire's unique perspective of the business, I was interested by Chyna's account of her relationship with Triple H, her release from the WWE and her sex tape. I liked hearing the direction Konnan thinks the business needs to go and I really liked how honest New Jack was with every question he was asked. However, these great things are instantly lost at the very unprofessional level this documentary is produced at. ICP fucking around off camera during Vampiro's interview and Rikishi's repetitive rants about how much he loves the WWE to the point he sounds like he would blow Vince McMahon if he walk into the room gets annoying and keeps lowering the bar for the film. If if weren't for these few interesting aspects, 101 Reasons Not to Be a Pro Wrestler would have received a more deserving 1 out of 5 for it's absolutely shitty sound, editing and camera work. Even if you're a hardcore wrestling fan, there isn't enough reason to even give this movie a shot.