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7 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Interesting

6/10
Author: Greg Buckle from Melbourne, Australia
2 March 2000

This biographical account of Bob Mathias's life up to and including his Olympic gold medals is more like a documentary or "real-life" TV show than anything else.

Track & Field enthusiasts will find it interesting. You certainly can't complain that the scenes of Mathias competing aren't realistic, seeing as he plays himself!

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

From my introduction of the film at the Library Of Congress in 2012.

6/10
Author: Larry41OnEbay-2 from Culpeper, VA USA
30 April 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The feature THE BOB MATHIAS STORY is a great example of two things, first it is an low budget, independent feature shot with a unique cast and you might say uniquely qualifies actors. Secondly, it's a rare print, this is not a new copy in fact it may be one of the only known copies as it is an original 1954 release print that came into the Library Congress via the copyright collection. Also, it's never been released on VHS or DVD. Saving and sharing the forgotten films, the orphans if you will is what film preservation is all about. These neglected films have good stories and need to be seen on the big screen with an audience. Now I have never seen this film before, so even though it's old – it's new to me. So we will discover it together. One of the only reviews I could find for it was from the New York Times, Oct. 16, 1954 – and I quote TO the further credit of Bob Mathias, the young American decathlon athlete, his personal reputation is that of a quiet, modest and altogether likable guy. And so, fittingly, is "The Bob Mathias Story," the Allied Artists presentation that opened yesterday. In addition to its over-all, unvarnished sincerity, this biographical tribute to an astounding sports record and an impeccable private life is commendable on other counts. Mr. Mathias plays himself, supported by a trim little cast including such seasoned veterans as Ann Doran, Ward Bond, and with surprising professional adeptness, his own pretty spouse, Melba. As handsome as any young Hollywood idol and twice as guileless in his emoting, Mr. Mathias cheerfully lopes through a series of comfortably undemanding incidents that allow him to remain exactly what he is. Kept moving at an easy clip by Director Frances D. Lyon, Richard Collins' scenario pleasantly recounts Mr. Mathias' homey upbringing in Tulare, Calif., his high-school "warming up" under a wise coach and his disarming courtship of his sweetheart from childhood. (And Melba, take it from us, is a honey.) Lastly, this carefully low-keyed depiction of the hero's unstartling formative years contributes much to the superb, genuinely stirring impact of the documentary inserts showing Mr. Mathias in action at the two Olympic meets that brought him and his country glory. Producer William E. Selwyn's film editors must have had a field day themselves, sifting the spectacular footage photographed at London and later at Helsinki, where in 1952 Mr. Mathias became the only contestant ever to win the Olympic Decathlon twice. We defy anybody to sit unmoved through these scenes, capsuled into a bird's-eye appraisal of the great international meet, as the competitive teams parade into view and then square off. Above all, there is the earnest facial urgency and elastic frame of the athlete from Tulare in a very nice little picture of which nobody, least of all Mr. and Mrs. Bob Mathias, need feel ashamed.  UNQUOTE—

Also in my research I contacted the family of Bob Mathias and here is a quote from his grandson, Alex

"Larry, Thanks for reaching out to us, that is very nice of you. My mom and her sisters all agree "that Dad would have gotten a kick out of them showing the movie especially with the London Olympics coming up." Enjoy the movie night! -Alex"

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