7.4/10
3,429
55 user 32 critic

Champion (1949)

Approved | | Drama, Film-Noir, Sport | 20 May 1949 (USA)
Boxer Midge Kelly rises to fame...mainly by stepping on other people.

Director:

Mark Robson

Writers:

Carl Foreman (screenplay), Ring Lardner (story "Champion")
Reviews
Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 9 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An unscrupulous movie producer uses an actress, a director and a writer to achieve success.

Director: Vincente Minnelli
Stars: Lana Turner, Kirk Douglas, Walter Pidgeon
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

On one day in the 21st Precinct squad room, assorted characters form a backdrop for the troubles of hard-nosed Detective Jim McLeod.

Director: William Wyler
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Eleanor Parker, William Bendix
Lust for Life (1956)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The life of brilliant but tortured artist Vincent van Gogh.

Directors: Vincente Minnelli, George Cukor
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Anthony Quinn, James Donald
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A letter is addressed to three wives from their "best friend" Addie Ross, announcing that she is running away with one of their husbands - but she does not say which one.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Jeanne Crain, Linda Darnell, Ann Sothern
I Walk Alone (1947)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Frankie Madison leaves prison expecting a share from his ex-partner. But Prohibition bootlegging didn't prepare Frankie for Big Business.

Director: Byron Haskin
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Lizabeth Scott, Kirk Douglas
The Set-Up (1949)
Crime | Film-Noir | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Because aging boxer Bill Thompson always lost his past fights, his corrupt manager, without telling Thompson, takes bribes from a betting gangster, to ensure Thompson's pre-arranged dive-loss in the next match.

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: Robert Ryan, Audrey Totter, George Tobias
Adventure | Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A U.S. Marshall and two deputies rescue a cattle rustler from a lynch mob led by a local cattle baron convinced that the rustler also killed his son.

Director: Raoul Walsh
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Virginia Mayo, John Agar
Drama | Film-Noir | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A man is reunited with his childhood friend and her husband, who believe he knows the truth about the death of her rich aunt years earlier.

Director: Lewis Milestone
Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Van Heflin, Lizabeth Scott
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A young trumpeter enjoys highs (musical success, fame, and fortune) and lows (sour marriage, death of his mentor, bout with alcoholism).

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Lauren Bacall, Doris Day
Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A frustrated former big-city journalist now stuck working for an Albuquerque newspaper exploits a story about a man trapped in a cave to rekindle his career, but the situation quickly escalates into an out-of-control circus.

Director: Billy Wilder
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Jan Sterling, Robert Arthur
Comedy | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The black sheep of a family and the local minister discover their true vocations during the Revolutionary War.

Directors: Guy Hamilton, Alexander Mackendrick
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Kirk Douglas, Laurence Olivier
Body and Soul (1947)
Drama | Film-Noir | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A talented boxer's young career hits difficult terrain when an unethical promoter takes interest in him.

Director: Robert Rossen
Stars: John Garfield, Lilli Palmer, Hazel Brooks
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Kirk Douglas ... Midge
Marilyn Maxwell ... Grace
Arthur Kennedy ... Connie
Paul Stewart ... Haley
Ruth Roman ... Emma
Lola Albright ... Palmer
Luis Van Rooten Luis Van Rooten ... Harris
Harry Shannon ... Lew
John Daheim John Daheim ... Dunne (as John Day)
Ralph Sanford ... Hammond
Esther Howard ... Mrs. Kelly
Edit

Storyline

Midge Kelly, hitchhiking west with lame brother Connie, is hustled unprepared into a pro boxing match. Though he's severely beaten, manager Tommy Haley finds him promising. Arrived in California, Midge and Connie find nothing but a menial job from which Midge gets relief by seducing Emma, a lovely young waitress. One shotgun marriage later, ambitious Midge falls back on the only option he knows: boxing. Seduced by cheering crowds, money, and a succession of blondes, Midge becomes more and more of a hero in public...and a heel in private. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

boxing | boxer | gym | waitress | promoter | See All (34) »

Taglines:

This is the only sport in the world where two guys get paid for doing something they'd be arrested for if they got drunk and did it for nothing. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Film-Noir | Sport

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 May 1949 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Champion See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$600,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The address, 49 Eagle Street, that Kirk Douglas mentions, was actually the address of where he grew up as a child. See more »

Goofs

Midge mangles the sculpture that Palmer has made of him, twisting the head out of alignment. In next shot, the head of statue is back in its original location. See more »

Quotes

Emma: It's funny.
Midge: What?
Emma: You know, I didn't like you at first. Well, you know, you never smile. I mean really smile. Not just on the outside.
Midge: Got to be happy to smile that way.
Emma: Aren't you happy?
Midge: Well, right now I am.
Emma: Then why don't you smile?
Emma: [he laughs] Midge, why aren't you happy?
Midge: Happy? It's hard to be happy when you're poor. I've been poor all my life. Real poor. You know what it is to be real poor? Cold poor? Hungry poor?
See more »

Alternate Versions

a cut out of this film was sold in France for the home movie market under the name "Un round sanglant" See more »


Soundtracks

Never Be It Said
By Dimitri Tiomkin and Goldie Goldmark (as "Goldie" Goldmark)
Sung by Polly Bergen (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

An intensely gripping film. Douglas is perfect!
14 January 1999 | by gitrichSee all my reviews

Kirk Douglas plays Midge Kelley, a talented boxer who uses everyone around him for his own gain. This may be Douglas' finest effort on film. The editing won an Oscar and rightfully so. This might be the finest movie involving boxing ever produced. Available in color but see the original black and white version. Listen for Polly Bergen's voice as a radio/juke box singer.


4 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 55 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series



Recently Viewed