Ali's biggest match, his fight with the US government. A film about the politics and hubris surrounding the Vietnam War and the revenge exacted on America's greatest sportsman of the 20th century because he refused to fight in that war.
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In 1964, world champion boxer Muhammad Ali requested exemption from the military draft based on his religious beliefs. His request was denied and when he refused induction into the army, he was convicted and sentenced to 5 years imprisonment. His case eventually works itself up the Supreme Court. In their first conference after the case is presented, the justices decide by majority vote to uphold the conviction and Justice John Harlan is tasked with preparing the majority opinion. He assigns one of his clerks, Kevin Connolly, to prepare a first draft but try as he might he believes that decision his wrong. His draft argues for overturning the conviction and Harlan agrees with him. The justice must now find a way to convince his colleagues. Written by
Is he sick? I know he has back problems but is it something more serious than that?
He has cancer, Mr. Connolly. He's a very private man. We would ask you to respect that.
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Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight is at best a mediocre film, despite the talents of its director and cast and at times it is downright awful. This is mainly due to the shoddy writing. There were times when I laughed out loud from some of the weaker lines of dialogue. The story also lacks focus as we are constantly lead away from the subject of Ali's court case. Further, besides the main two justices (Plummer and Langella respectively), the other characters are practically non-existent. Some of the blame can definitely rest on the poor editing, the main problem of which is the seemingly random interjection of old TV footage of Ali in interviews etc. I felt this made the film very disjointed.
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