Christian Bale is one crazy actor, and totally dedicated to his craft. The guy is 6'2" and over the past 7 years, has distorted his body again and again and again. In 2004, he dropped his weight down to 120lbs. for his role in The Machinist. In 2005, he brought it up to 190lbs for Batman Begins. 2006, back down for Rescue Dawn. Back up for The Dark Knight in 2008. Back down again for The Fighter in 2010 (He'll be back up for Dark Knight Rises for 2012 and rumoured to lose again, for Concrete Island).
Bale says that he was willing to put his body through such extremes because he worries that he won't be taken seriously as an actor. "I didn't really take acting classes, I didn't go to drama school or anything -- I always felt like I had to make up for it!" He doesn't have anything he needs to make up for anymore after his performance in The Fighter. He won Best Supporting Actor for both the Oscars and the Golden Globes.
Brilliantly done all around, but I'm giving Bale all the credit. I'm not even going to bother talking about Mark Wahlberg, or Melissa Leo, or Amy Adams. Bale steals the show as Dicky Eklund and is all the reason anyone really needs to watch this. Amazing.