6.8/10
6,836
47 user 16 critic

The Champ (1979)

PG | | Drama, Sport | 4 April 1979 (USA)
A former boxer discovers that his biggest battle of all is going to be with his ex-wife, Annie, who returns after abandoning their young son seven years prior.

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(story),
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ON DISC
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Mike
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Riley
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Dolly Kenyon
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Josie
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Georgie (as Elisha Cook)
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Charlie Goodman
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Whitey
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Hesh
Shirlee Kong ...
Donna Mae
Jeff Blum ...
Jeffie
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Hoffmaster
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Storyline

Billy Flynn, a former boxing champion, is now horse trainer in Hialeah. He makes just enough money to raise his little boy T.J., over whom he got custody after his wife Annie left him seven years ago. T.J. worships The Champ, who is now working on his comeback in order to give his boy a better future. But suddenly Annie shows up again. Written by Willy Vanhaelen <willy.vanhaelen@advalvas.be>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

boy | boxer | death | horse trainer | horse | See All (46) »

Taglines:

The most poignant love-triangle of all - a father, his son, and the woman who came between them. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sport

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

4 April 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El campeón  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,972,684, 8 April 1979, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$30,441,738
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Ricky Schroder. See more »

Goofs

When The Champ slaps T.J. he slaps him while standing up but, in the very next shot, he's kneeling down by T.J. See more »

Quotes

Billy: No smoking in the barn area. What do you want?
Annie: T.J.'s Timmy, isn't he?
Billy: Yeah, T.J. is Timmy. So you figured it out, so what? Even a dumb horse knows her own foal.
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Connections

Referenced in Gilmore Girls: The Breakup: Part 2 (2001) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Very disappointed...

...with the rating of this masterpiece. A 5.8/10? -_- I am upset about this.

What you have here is an epic movie that deserves a 9/10. It's the story of the love between a boy and his father, and the boy trying to make it on his own when his mother and father can't.

The movie starts out very big on horse-racing, showing how Jon Voight, "The Champ", is and gives brief glimpses into his past life. After awhile though, his whole past comes back to him when his son unknowingly meets his mother and develops a bond with her. Conflict between him and his wife rises and we see even deeper into what was a merely a shell of his life in the beginning of the film; he is complicated and emotionally bruised man, snapping sometimes at his son that he loves with all his heart.

The film has the most believable performances I have ever seen on screen, and is a tearjerker. But it doesn't try to make you cry once; the entire second half of the film is full of these scenes. Some work while others don't. Either way, it shows the true power and delicacy of unconditional love, and the way it ends leaves you gasping for breath because of the emotional impact it leaves. Not perfect, but it deserves a solid 9.0/10.


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