A 10 year history of mixed martial arts through the eyes of Renzo Gracie, one of its most charismatic pioneers."

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Cast overview:
Renzo Gracie ...
Himself
Robson Gracie ...
Himself
Ryan Gracie ...
Himself
Ralph Gracie ...
Himself
Daniel Gracie ...
Himself
B.J. Penn ...
Himself
Pat Miletich ...
Himself
Andre Gusmao
Kyra Gracie ...
Herself
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Renzo Gracie is the third generation of Jiu Jitsu fighters from the famous Brazilian Gracie family, tracing their art back to the last great samurai school in Japan. Renzo and the Gracie name are linked to the global phenomenon of mixed martial art fighting, one of the fastest growing sports in the world. The film follows him over a 10 year period from the days when Renzo fought bare knuckle in a cage with little or no rules. After the fights are banned from US television he follows the fight scene to Japan where his skill, honour and refusal to give up, make him a huge star. While others fight for fame and glory, Renzo is driven by a will to honour the family legacy. Although he continues to test himself in competition against the best on the planet, his passion for his art is equalled by a need to pass on his skills and experience. As another generation rise under his tuition, Renzo fights on into his late 30s, when injuries and a downturn in his fight record signal an end to his ... Written by Herman van den Berg

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25 October 2008 (USA)  »

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An honest and intriguing portrait.
23 October 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Gethin Aldous' new documentary film "Renzo Gracie: Legacy" should be considered an instant classic simply on the basis of it's scope and breadth - 10 years worth of footage chronicling Gracie and his family - but it also delivers much more than impressive expanse. Indeed, the Aldous documentary brings a veritable gold mine of new and exclusive behind the scenes material but is also executed effectively as a compelling narrative.

For those that already know of Renzo Gracie, one of the best and most accomplished fighters in mixed martial arts, coach of champions and member of martial arts' royal family, "Legacy" will give new color to passed down gym stories, reveal added depth to the man's character while likely also serving as a celebration of the attitude and philosophy of this modern day warrior. For those new to Gracie's story and the fight world in general, the documentary ably provides access and understanding to combat sports and the people behind the punches, kicks, throws and chokes.

Viewers travel back and forth from Brazil to Japan to the United States along with Gracie, his family and students in particular settings ranging from informal dinner tables and locker rooms to large sporting arenas. Aldous' lens alternately allows Renzo to address the viewer directly on many occasions (creating enough quotable material for a small motivational book) and the viewer to peer into candid private moments as observers.

Nothing makes for a worthwhile and revealing documentary like a devoted film maker who has committed years of his or her life to documenting and gaining the trust of their subjects. It's clear from both the amount of time covered by "Legacy" and the apparent ease of those being filmed that Aldous did a skillful job of blending in and capturing honest moments.

"Renzo Gracie: Legacy" accomplishes the rare feat of being able to both satisfy the most ardent and informed sports fan's desire for fresh, new perspective and knowledge and serve as an understandable primer for the uninitiated. "Legacy" has the capacity to teach the hardcore fan more about Gracie, Jiu Jitsu and MMA than they ever knew before and to move the general movie goer by the humanity of its stories.


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