As far as what-if scenarios go, “Grudge Match” floats one that’s hard to beat: What if Rocky Balboa fought Jake LaMotta?
Though Sylvester Stallone and Robert De Niro are hardly doing an exact reprise of their pugilist icons from “Rocky” and “Raging Bull” here, even faintly suggesting this fantasy bout has novelty value. There’s also value in the oddity of seeing these two stars work together, although Stallone’s “Expendables” spotlight-sharing and De Niro’s increasingly undiscriminating tastes make this seem like casting we should’ve seen coming.
It’s also a match-up that comes about three decades late. Full story for BostonGlobe.com subscribers.
Tom Russo can be reached at email@example.com.