Midge Kelly, hitchhiking west with lame brother Connie, is hustled unprepared into a pro boxing match. Though he's severely beaten, manager Tommy Haley finds him promising. Arrived in California, Midge and Connie find nothing but a menial job from which Midge gets relief by seducing Emma, a lovely young waitress. One shotgun marriage later, ambitious Midge falls back on the only option he knows: boxing. Seduced by cheering crowds, money, and a succession of blondes, Midge becomes more and more of a hero in public...and a heel in private. Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Hal March, a popular 50s stage, film and TV personality, is seen here, as a mob enforcer meeting out punishment against Midge Kelly (Kirk Douglas) for Kelly's failure to "throw" a fight. March would later be implicated in a real life "fix", as he was host of the popular but ill fated TV quiz show "The $64,000 Questiion"(1955-57). This quiz show was cited in the 50s "Quiz Show Scandal", where some former contestants testified under oath that they were given information pertaining to the questions that they may be asked, in advance of their appearances on the show. See more »
Midge mangles the sculpture that Palmer has made of him, twisting the head out of alignment. In next shot, the head of statue is back in its original location. See more »
This is a great movie. I rented it from the video store and expected an average boxing film, but instead I got a masterpiece. This movie is better than any boxing movie I've ever seen. The character is also very well constructed. Kirk Douglas really looks like he knows what he's doing in the training and boxing scenes. His acting in this is great and he doesn't overact. He is one of my all time favorite actors. Arthur Kennedy, another favorite of mine, is very good in this movie. Like in the part were he's yelling at Kirk Douglas telling him how his blood's gone cold. He tells Douglas he's worse than a murderer, he's a grave robber.
Midge Kelly does do a lot of wrong in this picture. He starts out as an o.k. guy and when he becomes a famous prizefighter and then champ he really changes. The money and fame goes to his head. He gets mixed up with a blonde too and steps on people to get to the top. He even gets rid of his manager Tommy, wonderfully played by Paul Stewart. He is always good in his supporting roles. The ones that come to mind are; The Bad and the Beautiful, King Creole and The Joe Louis Story. The actresses are good in this movie too and I think all three of them go good with Kirk Douglas. John Day is good as Johnny Dunne. He's always playing some tough guy or boxer. In Abbott and Costello Meet The Invisible Man he played fighter Rocky Hanlon. In Jailhouse Rock he played a tough guy that gets in to a brawl with Elvis Presley. In the Captain America serial he fist fights with Captain America.
My favorite parts in the movie are the opening scene when the fight announcer is introducing us to the champion. The announcer is played by Sam Balter. Balter seems to always be playing an announcer or commentator. In Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man he plays the commentator for the fight. Sam Balter was a great choice for Champion. As you see Kirk Douglas walking into view you can tell just by looking at him that he's a champion. My second favorite part is the thrilling climax. I love every boxing scene in the movie too. If you want to see one of the greatest movies ever made see this movie.
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