What is left when the only thing you do best is taken away from you? ‘Standing Eight‘ directed by Brian Kazmarck and written by Kazy Tauginas, who is also the lead, focuses on the story of Dusty, a professional boxer who gets his boxing license canceled after diagnosed with a disease called Systemic Lupus – a type of condition in which the autoimmune system of a person mistakenly attacks the healthy tissue in many parts of the body. When his competitor finds out, he challenges Dusty to take a tough decision by calling him a coward for hiding behind the pretext of a disease.
‘Standing Eight’ is about the unpredictable, tough obstacles we get hit by in life and about the hard decisions we sometimes need to make to overcome them. It is interesting to see the clear head with which Dusty actually deals with his condition. Despite all the provocations coming from Quinn (his competitor), he stands ground determined and dignified which actually proves the strength of his character.
And when he eventually decides to accept Quinn’s challenge he doesn’t do it for money or fame but chooses an intimate place for the fight away from the spotlights. His gesture reflects not only that he has understood this was otherwise going to haunt him his entire life but is also a strong action against becoming a victim. It is eventually his way of declaring war against the disease he bears and a way of fighting against it. It is not the money, the glamour or the fame that counts but the fight in itself, and the manner in which it is given has the power to endow a man with character and define who he really is.
The film is an excellent example of a combination between an awareness film about the Lupus disease and both a motivational and powerful film. Convincing and dramatic, Kazy Tauginas makes an excellent role. You believe him all the way and you emotionally stick by his side.
‘Standing Eight’ is dynamic, intense and its ending fills you up with energy. It is a highly entertaining experience as much as it is inspiring.