TODAY'S PAPER
72° Good Morning
72° Good Morning
SportsPro Wrestling

'Macho Man: The Randy Savage Story' a complimentary release

The late

The late "Macho Man" Randy Savage will forever be remembered by wrestling fans for his over-the-top personality, colorful ring attire and raspy voice that delivered some of the best promos in wrestling history. The "Macho Man" wrestled the majority of his career for Vince McMahon's World Wrestling Entertainment (1985-94) and Ted Turner's World Championship Wrestling (1994-2000). Credit: AP

Considering the fact that Randy Savage was persona-non-grata in the WWE for most of the last two decades of his life, it may come as a surprise for some that WWE would put out a largely complimentary documentary about the "Macho Man."

While not breaking too much new ground that wasn't covered in many of the comprehensive obituaries that surfaced after Savage's 2011 passing, this two-disc Blu-Ray/three-disc DVD set does delve deeper into the largely secretive Savage than WWE ever has before, including interviews from childhood friends, his brother "Leaping" Lanny Poffo, and his mother.

The documentary follows Savage's life from growing up as the son of Angelo "The Miser" Poffo and through his years as a promising baseball prospect, before finding his calling as a professional wrestler. Lanny offers what he says is a never-before-told story about Randy's earliest wrestling gimmick, complete with a photo.

Unfortunately, the doc breezes through Savage's hot run in Memphis, where he did some tremendous work with Jimmy Hart and Jerry Lawler. Most of the major milestones in his WWE career are discussed, including his Intercontinental title run, his legendary match with Ricky Steamboat at WrestleMania III, his world title reign and the subsequent explosion of his "Mega-Powers" tag team with Hulk Hogan.

Deservedly, much focus is paid to Savage's complicated relationship with his former wife and valet, "Miss" Elizabeth Hulett. The documentary does an admirable job balancing several wrestlers' accounts of Savage's overt possessiveness with Lanny's view that Savage was only trying to protect his wife. The couple's divorce, and its impact on Savage, is discussed, as is Hulett's 2003 death.

Although some important highlights in Savage's career, including his feud with the Ultimate Warrior and second WWE world title reign, are ignored, the documentary wisely chooses to focus more on the stories outside of the ring, including Savage's frustrations with being forced into semi-retirement at the end of his WWE run, and the happiness he found in his final years after re-kindling his romance with his high-school sweetheart.

In its totality, "The Randy Savage Story" paints a picture of a complex man who pursued every aspect of his life with the kind of intensity his fans came to know. But it also depicts Savage as a warm and loyal son, brother and friend. A story from a teenage girl who used to be neighbors with Savage is among the most revealing and touching.

With extras that include several rarely seen matches, including a six-man tag team cage match that Strike Force, the Hart Foundation, and the Honky Tonk Man, "Macho Man: The Randy Savage Story" is definitely one of WWE's better home video releases of 2014, and should give fans plenty of optimism about Savage taking his rightful place in the WWE Hall of Fame sooner than later.

New York Sports