Critic Reviews



Based on 28 critic reviews provided by
It is great to see a boxing movie that portrays both boxing and Jackson in different lights.
The Hollywood Reporter
Charged by a knock-out performance from Samuel L. Jackson, this compelling story of manly redemption will deliver a winning boxoffice combination of word of mouth and ultimately step outside the generic ring of sports lore.
By skewing the film into a father-son inspirational saga, the filmmakers sell out the best possibilities in their material. Lurie clearly wants Resurrecting the Champ to be "more" than a sports movie, or a newspaper movie. Ironically, he ends up with less.
It's more intelligent than most Hollywood movies you'll find in the heat of summer, and its saving grace is the quality of its acting, including Jackson's uncompromising turn as the old fighter, and delicious bits by David Paymer and Alan Alda as veteran editors.
Chicago Tribune
The film is easy to take, though it must be said: It's almost 100 percent blather.
Overly sentimentalized and the execution is slack. If not for Samuel L. Jackson's performance as the ravaged boxer, "Champ" would be of limited interest.
Village Voice
This isn't great raw material, though Lurie and his screenwriters try their best to portray Erik as some guilt-ridden evildoer who's perpetrated a great fraud.
Stays on its feet through all the rounds, but it never “floats like a butterfly.”
Hardly anything feels real, but what feels even more unreal is Hartnett with a cloying, sentimental, self-pitying performance. The liveliest thing in the film is the great Jackson, slumming again in a role miles beneath him.
The gooey sanctity of the bond between fathers and sons all but nullify Jackson's zesty performance.

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