Directed by Oz Rodriguez, ‘Miguel Wants to Fight’ is a coming-of-age comedy streaming on Hulu. It tells the story of Miguel, who, as the title suggests, wants to fight. This desire comes from his imagined peer pressure while living in a neighborhood where folks often get into petty disputes. Unlike others, Miguel has never gotten into a fight. He even backs off from helping others because of a number of reasons.

The screenplay, written by Shea Serrano and Jason Concepcion, delves into those reasons and weaves the tale of an adolescent trying to accept many changes around and within him. Besides Tyler Dean Flores in the lead role, the film stars Christian Vunipola, Imani Lewis, Suraj Partha, Raúl Castillo, Dascha Polanco, and Sarunas J Jackson in important roles. Spoilers ahead.

Miguel Wants to Fight (2023) Movie Synopsis & Plot Summary:

What is ‘Miguel Wants to Fight’ about?

Oz Rodriguez’s ‘Miguel Wants to Fight’ is about 17-year-old Miguel (Tyler Dean Flores), who tries to make sense of his identity amidst a sudden change in his life. He lives in a neighborhood prone to frequent fights. His father, Alberto (Raúl Castillo), is a boxing coach. But he preaches responsible use of his skills and hates needless fighting. He and his wife Lydia (Andrea Navedo) hope to see Miguel have a better life than them, as any parent does. But that subconsciously instills fear in Miguel’s mind. He never gets into any fight and shies away from helping others during their fights.

This is particularly ironic since Miguel loves action flicks. He discusses One Punch Man with his friends – David (Christian Vunipola), Srini (Suraj Partha), and Cass (Imani Lewis), and how its protagonist can knock someone out with a single punch. Unlike his friends, he asks whether the act of fighting is good or bad. Later, while playing basketball, Srini gets in a spat. While David and Cass come forward to help him, Miguel stands aside. On their way home, they see Armando (Sarunas J Jackson), a professional boxer who just escaped jail. They fear him so much that they walk on the other side of the road. Srini still wishes to be Armando’s buddy, but David thinks otherwise.

What big change happens in Miguel’s life?

Soon after, they realize that Miguel has never jumped into a fight. They recount the past fights when Miguel stayed back instead of helping them out. Miguel does not fight because he considers it to be a bad thing. Srini and Cass believe Miguel should be up for it, whereas David feels there’s no need. Back home, Alberto sees Miguel’s friends’ knocked-up faces and advises them not to be reckless. Later that night, Miguel learns shocking news. Because of an exciting job offer for his mother with better pay, their family is going to move within a week. They consider this new neighborhood more nurturing than where they live. He, however, feels shattered that he has to leave his life behind.

Miguel’s Plan

Miguel does not tell his friends about his family’s relocation plan. While he cleans his father’s boxing arena, Alberto speaks with David about his father, who was a ferocious boxer. David talks about his mother trying to live past his father’s death. Meanwhile, Miguel cannot stop thinking about how he has never got into a fight with anyone. So, he plans to fight as a part of his checklist. The friends ask – why does he want to do this all of a sudden? Miguel starts to think of a specific reason. He recalls a classroom from a year ago, where he was mocked for a wardrobe malfunction while studying about Mona Lisa. Since it looked like he had a boner, Adrian (Jordyn Owens) joked that he was a ‘Bona Lisa.’

Cass starts thinking of the rules Miguel needs for his first fight. He needs to have a purpose of justice since he is not a bully. David says Miguel cannot throw the first punch, whereas Srini wants him to stay away from a known bully – Damien Delgado (Juan Abdias). Cass expects Miguel to have a strategy. She makes him imagine that he is in a fight like Bruce Lee. He pictures himself wearing a suit that Bruce wore in Game of Death and beating the shit out of Adrian. In this imagined scenario, he is victorious in the end. The following day, in school, he cannot stop thinking about it. However, Adrian’s broken arm breaks Miguel’s ambitions. So, he decides to battle someone else.

Miguel vs. Kevin

Miguel Wants to Fight (2023) Movie Ending Explained
A still from Miguel Wants to Fight (2023)

In the supermarket, Miguel’s buddies push him to provoke a stranger to get into a fight. Miguel, however, cannot help but be overtly polite. In the end, after being rude to an old man, he rushes out of the store. Back home, Lydia tells Miguel that he should not keep secrets from his friends. She wants him to tell his friends that he is shifting to another town. Instead, he meets them to tell his next target plan – Kevin Troy (Collin Roach). This kid mocked him for counterfeit Air Jordans that said – Air Morgan.  That’s why Miguel decided to make him his new target. However, when he approaches Kevin, he accidentally ends up befriending him. Kevin apologizes for their past encounter and talks about how his parents also got him a pair of Air Morgans. This makes Miguel rethink his plan.

Miguel vs. Blake

Unlike Srini and Cass, David keeps telling Miguel that he does not need to fight. He understands that boxing or fighting does not make a person feel whole. David dislikes Armando because this person with felony convictions once disrespected his father. Anyhow, Miguel still insists that he wants to fight someone. After 2 failed attempts, he decides to fight their senior, Blake White (Thomas Whitcomb). But before he tries this out, Cass decides to teach him not to flinch, like how he did with Kevin. Later that night, Miguel has a violent dream where Damien hits him and David to a pulp. He wakes up with the same terror.

Nevertheless, Miguel goes to school and provokes Blake. He knows that Blake is a racist. So, he roasts the white kid based on his prejudices. Blake retorts with racist remarks, which angers Miguel further. So, he insults Blake’s sister, who lost both her legs about a month ago. The very next moment, he sees the sister in a wheelchair and realizes that he made a terrible mistake by being unkind. So, he runs away from the campus. He does not speak with his friends and rather goes to meet Armando. Miguel asks the man with felony convictions how he can make the other person make the first move in a fight. Armando makes him see how being a ‘bad person’ can liberate him to not fear morality.

Miguel Wants to Fight (2023) Movie Ending Explained:

Does Miguel fight with anyone in the end?

After his meeting with Armando, Miguel meets his father at a farewell celebration at his boxing club. He finally becomes open about his anger about the sudden plan to move. Afterward, Cass advises him to fight Claudia (Ajendara Guevara). He imagines himself in a dramatic scenario where he and Claudia fight, Crouching Tiger-style. In that fantasy, David confronts him for bailing on him and not helping to prep for their upcoming test. While Miguel intends to fight Claudia, she stays absent for days afterward. He still refuses to help David with his prep and insists on a fight. Suddenly, he imagines himself as an anime character, fighting like the One Punch man.

The next day, David notices Miguel’s parents packing their stuff in their car. He realizes that they are relocating. Later, during Mrs. Rodriguez’s class, Miguel provokes her and ends up getting lunch detention. This messes up his plan to fight with John. However, the moment he gets to leave the class, he bumps into Damien. While trying to punch this infamous bully, he ends up punching Mrs Rodriguez. After this mess-up, his friends learn that he is planning to move. David confronts him being so occupied with his sudden urge to fight. He, Cass, and Srini get mad at him for the secret and leave him.

Why did Miguel want to fight someone?

Back home, Miguel opens up to his father about his attempt to gain respect through a fight. He felt terrible that he did not jump in when his friends got into a fight. So, trying to get into one was his way of trying to fit in their neighborhood. He thought Alberto would rethink their move to a nicer neighborhood. Finally, he talks about the pressure he feels for not being like his father. Alberto says that Miguel need not feel that burden. He also talks about David’s emotional weight after his father’s death.

After this reconciliation, Miguel meets his friends to patch things up. Ultimately, they encounter Saul and his friends, who provoke Srini. So, he starts fighting, and so do his friends. This is when Miguel jumps in to help his friends. He finally gets a cathartic experience of a fight.

Read More: 20 Best Comedy Movies of 2022


Miguel Wants to Fight (2023) Movie Links: IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes
Miguel Wants to Fight (2023) Movie Cast: Tyler Dean Flores, Christian Vunipola, Imani Lewis
Miguel Wants to Fight (2023) Movie Genre: Comedy, Runtime: 1h 15m
Where to watch Miguel Wants to Fight

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