Ali (2001)

Ali (2001, USA) C-159m. SCOPE ** D: Michael Mann. Starring Will Smith, Jamie Foxx, Jon Voight, Mario Van Peebles, Ron Silver, Jeffrey Wright, Jada Pinkett Smith, Giancarlo Esposito, Ted Levine. Glossy attempt at a screen biography of the great boxer Muhammad Ali, with Smith in the title role. Script covers the years 1964-1974 (a pivotal period in which Ali had contact with Malcolm X and converted to the Islam), but film wallows in flashy depictions instead of providing descriptions. For people less familiar with the star, this may seem superficial. Partly redeemed by Smith's performance and Emmanuel Lubezki's brilliant cinematography. Also notable for Mann's unconventional directorial style (if only his script was better).


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© Ron Altman