29 December 2005


This movie, directed by Michael Mann, is all surfaces. I looked forward to learning something about Mohammed Ali, about whom I knew nothing, so it was disappointing to find this film to be more like a music video (or string of them) than a biopic.

There’s nothing wrong with the performances. Will Smith is fine; sometimes his resemblance to Ali is almost creepy. But, beyond depth, the movie lacks connective tissue. It’s one damn thing after another. You don’t feel a why behind anything. Ali becomes a fighter. Why? He converts to Islam. Why? Etc.

So I don’t especially recommend it. But if you have the remotest interest in Ali, do see When We Were Kings ; this is a terrific documentary about the Ali/Foreman fight in Zaire.

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