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

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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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  (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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6 out of 6 people found the following review useful.
Bad Blood, 25 March 2007
Author: sol1218 from brooklyn NY

The film "Ring of Fire" centers around the three historic Emile Griffith Benny "Kid" Paret Welterweights Championship bouts. The first taking place in Miami Beach on April 1, 1961 with Griffith looking sluggish and behind on points suddenly coming to life and wrestled the championship belt away from Paret flooring him in the 13th round with a double left hood followed by a straight right putting the champ on Queer Street. The second championship fight between the two welterweights took place on September 30, 1961 in New York's old Madison Square Garden and went the full 15, the distance, rounds. Paret surprising many fight fans in attendance and watching on TV by winning a split decision and regaining the championship that he lost to Griffith six months earlier.

As the two fighters were about to weigh in on the eve of their rubber match again in the Garden on March 24, 1962 bad blood had developed between the two pugilists to the point where they almost had it out right there and then at the weigh in before he match. Paret started needling Griffith, more to disrupt his concentration on the fight then anything else, about his sexuality calling him a "queer or homosexual", to put it mildly, in Spanish. These uncalled for remarks on Paret's part really started to get under Griffith's skin as well as enraged and set him off later in the ring.

In the fight there was no love lost between the two with both Griffith and Paret slugging it out toe to toe for eleven rounds. Griffith earlier in the sixth was knocked down, for the first time in his professional boxing career, by a devastating one two right left combination by a revitalized Paret. Paret then started slowly taking control of the fight in the middle and later rounds and leading on points, in the opinion of many at ringside, as the fateful and fatal 12th round started.

The 12th round for the most part was uneventful until with about a minute left Griffith suddenly caught Paret with a hooking solid right that stunned him knocking him into the ropes. Before Paret could counter or even cover up Griffith swarmed all over him like a windmill with two dozen punches with Paret not throwing a single one in return. Paret was left unconscious and propped up against the ropes with the fight stopped by referee Ruby Goldstein with 51 seconds left in the round. Benny "Kid" Parets skull was so baldly battered that he, ten days later, died in Roosevealt Hospital from a massive blood clot without regaining consciousness.

Even though were shown what Emile Griffith did in his boxing career since his last fight with Benny "Kid" Paret it was that fight that haunted him for the rest of his days in and out of the ring. The Paret fatal boxing match not only had caused Griffith to lose his killer instinct in the ring but may very well have caused him to become an alcoholic. It wasn't Until he met with Benny "Kid" Parets son some 40 years later and with Benny Jr kindness love and understanding that Griffith finally made peace with himself. Brutal but extremely moving documentary about a brutal sport Professional Boxing and those who participate in it both in and out of the ring.

Mrs. Paret left a widow with an infant son Benny Jr. after her husbands untimely death has never really recovered from the shock that took Benny Sr. away from her on March 24, or really officially April 4, 1962. It's only her son Benny Jr. whom we see at the end of the movie finally meeting face to face with the man Emile Griffith who was responsible for his fathers death. The scene between the two is one of most emotionally packed encounters even put on the big or small screen that no amount of acting could possibly duplicated.

Emile Griffith himself had suffered his fair amount of tragedies since his final battle with Benny Paret. Not only losing the championship belt that he took from the fallen champion that terrible night but losing almost everything that he won in the ring leaving him broke. Later after getting a job helping out young men in prison to go straight and, if they have any talent, pursue a boxing career he himself was almost beaten to death in 1992. That's when Griffith was brutally attacked one evening, leaving dead drunk from a NYC bar, and robbed by a gang of thugs who beat the 55 year-old ex-champ to the point that he almost died from kidney failure.

We get to see in the end how Emile Griffith finally got closer from the demons that had been tormenting him ever since that horrible evening some 45 years ago when he should have been celebrating the biggest victory he ever won in the ring. Griffith instead went into a long tail-spin that didn't seem to ever end. It wasn't until he finally got to see and talk to the son, Benny Paret Jr, of the person he killed that night in he boxing ring that his life took a sudden turn for the better. It's then that he saw that forgiveness from Benny Jr is far more powerful then the hate that he had for his dad that not only lead to the psychical death of Benny "Kid" Paret but, until he finally got to talk to Benny Jr, the spiritual and emotional death of himself as well.

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