IMDb > Ring of Fire: The Emile Griffith Story (2005)

Ring of Fire: The Emile Griffith Story (2005) More at IMDbPro »

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A story of violence, love, sex, politics and media centered around the life of Griffith, a six-time world welterweight champion. | Add synopsis »
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The Documentary Blog’s Top Docs of 2009 and the Decade
 (From FilmJunk. 5 January 2010, 12:40 PM, PST)

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Extraordinarily well-done! See more (9 total) »


  (in credits order)
Don Dunphy ... Himself (archive footage)
Benny Paret ... Himself (archive footage)
Emile Griffith ... Himself
Pete Hamill ... Himself
Juan Gonzalez ... Himself
Howie Albert ... Himself
Gil Clancy ... Himself
Jimmy Breslin ... Himself
Bill Gallo ... Himself
Ron Ross ... Himself
Hank Kaplan ... Himself
Franklin Griffith ... Himself
Jimmy Powers ... Himself (archive footage)
Gaspar Ortega ... Himself
Neal Gabler ... Himself
Jack Newfield ... Himself
Carmen Basilio ... Himself
Lucy Paret ... Herself

Joe Cortez ... Himself
Manuel Alfaro ... Himself (archive footage)
Emelda Griffith ... Herself (archive footage)
Garry Moore ... Himself (archive footage)
José Torres ... Himself
Charles Kaiser ... Himself

Liberace ... Himself (archive footage)
Ruby Goldstein ... Himself (archive footage)
Herb Goldstein ... Himself

Ed Sullivan ... Himself (archive footage)
Sugar Ray Robinson ... Himself (archive footage)
Alexander Schiff ... Himself (as Dr. Alexander Schiff)

Norman Mailer ... Himself (voice)
Max Turshen ... Himself (archive footage)
Joseph F. Carlino ... Himself - Speake of Assembly
Gene Fullmer ... Himself
Benny Paret Jr. ... Himself
Ralph Dupas ... Himself (archive footage)
Sadie Griffith ... Herself
Eckhard Dagge ... Himself
Luis Rodrigo ... Himself
Juan LaPorte ... Himself
Angelo Dundee ... Himself
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

George Foreman ... Himself
Marvelous Marvin Hagler ... Himself
Naseem Hamed ... Himself

Jacqueline Kennedy ... Herself (archive footage)

John F. Kennedy ... Himself (archive footage)

Jake LaMotta ... Himself
Michael Moorer ... Himself

Ken Norton ... Himself
Jimmy O'Farrell ... Himself
Lee Harvey Oswald ... Himself (archive footage)
Nelson Rockefeller ... Himself (archive footage)

Dustin Warburton ... Himself

Directed by
Ron Berger 
Dan Klores 
Produced by
Jake Bandman .... assistant producer
Ron Berger .... producer
Larry Burday .... associate producer
Larry Burday .... coordinating producer
Liza Burnett .... associate producer
Lewis Katz .... executive producer
Dan Klores .... producer
Jack Newfield .... co-producer
Adam Schiff .... associate producer
Original Music by
Sherman Foote 
Cinematography by
Buddy Squires 
Film Editing by
Michael Levine 
Art Department
Joy Kilpatrick .... graphics designer
Sound Department
Mariusz Glabinski .... sound editor
Marlena Grzaslewicz .... sound editor
Roger Phenix .... sound
Irv Reinhard .... sound
Mark Roy .... sound
George Shafnaker .... sound (as George Shafnacker)
Ira Spiegel .... sound editor
Dominick Tavella .... sound re-recording mixer
Camera and Electrical Department
Erik Akerblom .... location engineer
Andrew Cravotta .... videotape operator
Will Curtin .... videotape operator
Andy Futo .... assistant camera
Peter Holmes .... videotape operator
Stephen Kazmierski .... additional cinematographer (as Steve Kazmierski)
Justin Kelly .... videotape operator
Cecilia Lewis .... videotape operator
Carmen Maxcy .... videotape operator
John Meenan .... videotape operator
Laura Nespola .... assistant camera
Gerry Reises .... assistant camera
Anthony Savini .... assistant camera
Derek Young .... location engineer
Animation Department
Glen Schauer .... stills animation
Editorial Department
Wally Carey .... on-line editor
Patricia Flannigan .... post-production
Scott Gaillard .... color correction
Melissa Kirz .... post-production
Susan Korda .... editorial consultant
Jacob Steingroot .... assistant editor
Music Department
Brian Chin .... music supervisor
Oscar Hernandez .... composer: additional music
Adam Lawrence .... music librarian
Transportation Department
Eddie Amaro .... driver
Leroy Sims .... driver
Other crew
Howie Abbott .... source: archive photographs
Joan Baird .... assistant to producer
Charlie Barbrizio .... production assistant
Tony Fosco .... source: archive photographs
Libby Geist .... production assistant
Herb Goldstein .... source: archive photographs
Emile Griffith .... source: archive photographs
George Kalinsky .... source: archive photographs
Julianne Kim .... bookkeeper
Jacob Maarbjerg .... source: archive photographs
Claude Maloon .... source: archive photographs
Randy Neumann .... source: archive photographs
Veena Raj .... assistant to producer
Elias Savada .... copyright researcher
Daniel Vatsky .... researcher
Karen Wyatt .... archival researcher
Susanna Aaron .... special thanks
Kevin Barry .... special thanks
Karen Berger .... special thanks
Steve Bornn .... special thanks
Jonathan Dana .... special thanks
Clive Davis .... special thanks
Bob Drury .... special thanks
Angelo Dundee .... special thanks
Don Elbaum .... special thanks
Ari Emanuel .... special thanks
Linda Fiorentino .... special thanks
Gary Ginsberg .... special thanks
Les Goodstein .... special thanks
Christina Griffin .... special thanks
Donna Gutkin .... special thanks
Greg Hodes .... special thanks
George Kalinsky .... special thanks
Craig Kallman .... special thanks
Abbe Klores .... special thanks
Emily Kriegel .... special thanks
Mark Kriegel .... special thanks
Peter Lofrumento .... special thanks
Steve Lott .... special thanks
Norman Mailer .... special thanks
Cristina McGinniss .... special thanks
Judith McNally .... special thanks
Hunter Meighan .... special thanks
Lorne Michaels .... special thanks
Liston Monsanto .... special thanks
Beth Nathanson .... special thanks
Claudette Sierra .... special thanks
Bruce Silverglade .... special thanks
Eddie Simon .... special thanks
Fisher Stevens .... special thanks
Allison Weiner .... special thanks
Luana Wheatley .... special thanks
Patrick Whitesell .... special thanks
Cary Woods .... special thanks
Melissa Young .... special thanks

Other Companies

Additional Details

87 min


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12 out of 16 people found the following review useful.
Extraordinarily well-done!, 21 April 2005
Author: Greg Couture from Portland, Oregon

I'd probably never have known about "Ring of Fire: The Emile Griffith Story" had a friend not told me about it, nor would I have been inclined to watch it were it not for my being able to consistently trust his recommendations.

Despite its subject matter (which I would normally find less-than-intriguing), I thought it was extraordinarily well-done. The contemporary music selections and newsreel clips were well chosen and added immeasurably to the mise en scene. And that final reconciliation scene between Griffith and the son of the boxer who died after fighting Griffith packed a well-earned emotional wallop.

Griffith is a sad case - certainly not meant for the career that ultimately pretty much destroyed his life. He seems a person of genuine charm and a certain gentleness - not what many might associate with the personality of a champion professional boxer. I was surprised how, in the final sequences, the makers didn't shrink from discussing the gay aspect of the story, even while Griffith seems to still be disavowing that he's actually gay.

The widow of Benny "The Kid" Paret was quite a camera subject, very expressive, and Sadie Griffith, Emile's left-behind wife, is still quite a dazzler - what a smile! (Though that close-cropped hairdo wasn't very flattering.)

Previously I knew nothing about Griffith and his story and was certainly grateful that the USA Network chose to show it uninterrupted, since I suspect that I may not have stayed with it had it been constantly cut into for the usual number of commercials.

I have a complaint about the title, though. "Ring of Fire" has been used a number of times, including for an Andrew and Virginia Stone potboiler from 1961, released by M-G-M. (IMDb erroneously says the aspect ratio is 2.35:1, but I saw it in a theater and it was not a widescreen movie). It starred the then-popular David Janssen and was filmed in Metrocolor in and around Vernonia, Oregon, not too far from where I now live. I thought the documentary makers ought to have come up with something more original and, perhaps, a trifle more appropriate to Griffith's sad story.

I understand, from the Message Boards on this film's IMDb title site that the story may be filmed by Paramount (in conjunction with the USA Network) as a major motion picture. They should leave well enough alone, especially since I can imagine the rap "star" or some other currently "hot" black personality who'll probably get the title role. Sean "P. Diddy" Combs, perhaps. Puh-LEEZ!

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