6.9/10
1,981
16 user 10 critic

Triumph of the Spirit (1989)

Clip
1:57 | Clip

Watch Now

From $3.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
Fact based story about a former Greek Olympic boxer who was taken as a prisoner during World war II and placed in the Auschwitz prison camp. There he was permitted to survive as long as he ... See full summary »

Director:

Robert M. Young

Writers:

Shimon Arama (story), Zion Haen (story) | 2 more credits »
Reviews

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Off Limits (1988)
Action | Thriller | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

McGriff and Albaby are probably doing the worst law enforcement job in the world - they are plain clothes U.S. military policemen on duty in war-time Saigon. However, their job becomes even... See full summary »

Director: Christopher Crowe
Stars: Willem Dafoe, Gregory Hines, Fred Ward
Victory (1996)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Axel Heyst lives on a secluded island near the Dutch East Indies port of Surabaya. The year is 1913. While on personal business to the port, he visits the hotel owned by racist German ... See full summary »

Director: Mark Peploe
Stars: Willem Dafoe, Sam Neill, Irène Jacob
White Sands (1992)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A small southwestern town Sheriff finds a body in the desert with a suitcase and five hundred thousand dollars. He impersonates the man and stumbles into an F.B.I. investigation.

Director: Roger Donaldson
Stars: Willem Dafoe, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Mickey Rourke
Action | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

During the air war over Vietnam, a U.S. Navy A-6 Intruder bomber pilot schemes with a hardened veteran to make an unauthorized air strike on Hanoi.

Director: John Milius
Stars: Danny Glover, Willem Dafoe, Brad Johnson
Shackin' Up (1984)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

A play-based erotic anthology about Manhattan's vibrant, lusty and seedy nightlife and 9 sleazy trysts of the rich and the streetwise New Yorkers. Features Penthouse Pet Corinne Alphen and then unknown Willem Dafoe in a cameo.

Director: Simon Nuchtern
Stars: Corinne Wahl, George Ayer, Gordon Press
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A young marchioness who loves the way of free-thinking and flatterers invites an author into her house who pretends to seduce her...

Director: Anna Maria Tatò
Stars: Ivan Bacciocchi, Jean-Claude Carrière, Axelle Cummings
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Willem Dafoe ... Salamo Arouch
Edward James Olmos ... Gypsy
Robert Loggia ... Father Arouch
Wendy Gazelle Wendy Gazelle ... Allegra
Kelly Wolf Kelly Wolf ... Elena
Costas Mandylor ... Avram Arouch
Kario Salem ... Jacko
Edward Zentara ... Janush
Hartmut Becker ... Maj. Rauscher
Burkhard Heyl Burkhard Heyl ... Aide to Rauscher
Zofia Saretok ... Momma
Grazyna Krukówna ... Sister Julie
Karolina Twardowska Karolina Twardowska ... Bemmi
Juranda Krol Juranda Krol ... Sarah
Wiktor Mlynarczyk Wiktor Mlynarczyk ... Beppo
Edit

Storyline

Fact based story about a former Greek Olympic boxer who was taken as a prisoner during World war II and placed in the Auschwitz prison camp. There he was permitted to survive as long as he fought for the amusement of his captors. His father and brother were also held as insurance that he would continue to fight. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

prisoner | fight | prison | boxer | greek | See All (139) »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

23 December 1989 (South Korea) See more »

Also Known As:

A pokol bajnoka See more »

Filming Locations:

Poland See more »

Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$33,963, 10 December 1989, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$408,839
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color | Black and White (archive footage)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Shortly after the film's release, Jacques "Jacko" Razona, a Jewish boxer from Thessaloniki, sued the producers. Razona claimed that they had stolen his story, and that Arouch had grossly exaggerated his exploits. The case was later settled out of court. See more »

Goofs

The movie shows the end phase of life in Auschwitz and the forced death march as the camp is evacuated. Salamo Arouch is sent to work in the Sonderkomando in the crematorium where suddenly he witnesses the uprising and destruction of what is clearly crematorium II or III. In reality, the uprising occurred in October 1944, months before the evacuation. The SS dismantled the crematoriums over the preceding months and the forced death march evacuations occurred in late January. (In addition, the evacuation occurred in the middle of winter, the movie shows a nice sunny day, where in reality there would have been snow on the ground.) See more »

Quotes

Gypsy: Listen, I'm only going to say this once. For those who can hear me tell the rest. First come the SS, our lord and masters. Then comes our block health manager, Kyr. Then come the assistants, Otto and me. Then come the rats. Then come the lice... and then come you.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Boxing for life in a death camp
24 September 2008 | by organicsocialSee all my reviews

This is an exceptional tale of an extremely talented and gifted sportsman surviving an immoral, insane, racist, despotic ideology through the one thing he knows best, boxing. It's an ode to a man refusing to accept the obvious fate and fighting to stay alive in spite of the total degeneration and breakdown of all humanity around him. In a way I compare this movie to 'The Pianist' and unlike many other holocaust movies, this movie depicts the protagonist fighting back his tormentors and even bettering them as they hate him for winning every time. All this time he is like a Gladiator, fighting other men who are in same position as his, just to entertain ruthless Nazi officials while he is constantly aware that if he loose he would surely die. The movie is aptly named after Salamo's undying perseverance for life where his soul was been trampled. The death camp scenes sure hint that movies like Schindler's list and life is beautiful borrow heavily in visual style from this movie. Though the violence in the movie is more of suggestive and less graphic than its successors yet it proves quite moving due to a very convincing performance of William Dafoe (I am sure he did work hard to get in shape and develop such agility for a boxer), and to the fact that all this happened in reality. Also the soundtrack was successful in carrying the heaviness of the movie. Sure it is a seriously made movie on one of the most shameful happenings of modern human history. But at one point it can also be seen as a great boxing movie. It is like capturing the psychology of a tormented and tortured warrior, and the movie does that well.


2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 16 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

IMDb Freedive: Watch Movies and TV Series for Free

Watch Hollywood hits and TV favorites for free with IMDb Freedive. Start streaming on IMDb and Fire TV devices today!

Start watching

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed