Monday, April 23, 2012

Review: WWE Greatest Rivalries - Shawn Michaels vs. Bret Hart

Thanks to a pretty awesome update to Netflix streaming, I was finally able to catch the "WWE Greatest Rivalries: Shawn Michaels vs. Bret Hart" documentary, and I must say it was every bit as good as the previews made it look.  Contrary to what you might think, this wasn't just a sit down interview documenting the events of the Montreal Screwjob, but more of a documentary on Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels entire time in WWE together.

After brief bios on the start of each man's career, it was great to see this interview kick off with Jim Ross leading the conversation into the timeframe where The Rockers debuted in WWE, where the Hart Foundation were already an established team.  The initial talk covers tag team scene in the late 80's, and even talk from both Shawn and Bret about the infamous night The Rockers won the WWE Tag Team Championships from The Hart Foundation, but the decision never counted or aired due to the top rope breaking and ruining the match.  The conversation really opens viewers eyes to the fact that Bret and Shawn were good friends for years before any of the tension in the 1997 era.

We then move on to Bret and Shawn's move to singles competition, and the many matches they had together for years.  We look at both men's paths toward the Intercontinental and WWE titles, all leading up to talk of their legendary Iron Man Match at WrestleMania 12.  There were so many rumors about that match and they are all addressed here.  You really get a feel for how well things were protected back then, because many of the things that were going around were things they wanted everyone to think.

Of course the highlight of the whole conversation is indeed the talk about the Montreal Screwjob and its lead up and aftermath.  This is so unique because even though the stories has been told multiple times by multiple sources on multiple DVD's, this is the 2 men involved sitting side by side and telling their side.  Usually on a DVD you get a guy sitting there telling his side, but this was so unique as either guy was right there to agree or disagree to anything said.  The emotion from both sides while telling this story is what really drives home how the incident affected them both for years.  It was almost expected that Shawn Michaels might tear up while telling the story since he's let it be known for years how much of a changed man he is, but to see Bret also choke up a few times over various aspects of this time period really shows how important this project was for both of them.


If you were a fan of either man, or just a fan of this era, this DVD is a must see.  It is the final cap on the coverage of the Montreal Screwjob.  While DVD's like "Wrestling with Shadows" documented the entire event as it happened and were great, this is like the finale of it all with both men sitting down, discussing it, and maybe finally putting an end to it all.  I wanted to review the actual documentary portion here, but if you get the DVD or Blu Ray, there is a great assortment of matches as well including some rare house show matches with both singles and Rockers vs. Hart Foundation match ups.  If you became a fan in the last 5 years or so this DVD may not interest you, but beyond that I must say that this has to rank up there as possibly the best DVD that WWE has ever put out.

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