If you miss the days of epic wrestling rivalries, unrealistically sweaty bodies and professional wrestlers with positive morals then you’ll be remiss if you didn’t stop what you’re doing and start watching No Holds Barred. Don’t worry, if you’re at work your boss will understand. Just look him in his soul and say “RIP’ EM!”
It’s a movie that was made back when the WWE/WWF was making movies about wrestling, not just movies with wrestlers.
No Holds Barred is about Rip, who is the World Wrestling Federation champion that is as faithful to his fans as he is to the network he wrestles for. Brell (Kurt Fuller), the new head of the World Television Network, wants Rip to wrestle for his network. but when Rip refuses Brell initiates a show called “The Battle of the Tough Guys”, a violent brawling competition like ECW. A mysterious man, Zeus (Tommy ‘Tiny’ Lister), wins the competition and becomes the face of the Tough Guys… and Brell decides to use him as an angle to get at Rip.
The whole movie was ridiculous and awesome at the same time, because for every second that goes by where Rip is playing basketball with inner city black kids, there’s also an incredible rivalry between Zeus and Rip that any old school wrestling fan would love.
Fuller’s character is fun to hate and almost everything he does is hysterically awful. For example, we’re introduced to him when he’s sitting in his office with a bunch of other executives watching Rip’s latests match and repeatedly using the word “Jock-ass”. Then when he has a meeting with Rip to discuss his contract with the WWF (while Rip is wearing his ‘casual spandex’) he tries to win him over with a blank check… when that doesn’t work he tries to send Rip a message by diverting his limo to a dark alley where he can get beat up. Before the 20 minute mark of the movie, we’re given an epic fight scene that will pump you up and have you completely sold that this movie is going to be “DOOOOOKIIEEEEEEE” but the best kind of dookie that you’ll enjoy until the very end.
Not only is this movie full of all this, it’s wrapped around an extremely forced love story where Joan Severance finds out that Rip is more than just muscles… he’s a good guy… who wears really short shorts to bed.
No Holds Barred has everything from caged midgets to rowdy bar fights… in the same scene. My friends were in awe that I was a wrestling fan and had never seen this movie, after watching it I was also shocked that I didn’t even own a VHS copy.