8.0/10
13,638
57 user 67 critic

When We Were Kings (1996)

Trailer
1:43 | Trailer

On Disc

at Amazon

A documentary of the 1974 heavyweight championship bout in Zaire, "The Rumble in the Jungle," between champion George Foreman and underdog challenger Muhammad Ali.

Director:

Leon Gast
Won 1 Oscar. Another 11 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Documentary | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Thirty-Two year-old Muhammad Ali takes on what was at that time, one of the most powerful boxers in the history of the sport, in one last shot at greatness. Ali employs his "rope-a-dope" ... See full summary »

Stars: Muhammad Ali, George Foreman, Marv Albert
Facing Ali (2009)
Documentary | Biography | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Ten of Muhammad Ali's former rivals pay tribute to the three-time world heavyweight champion.

Director: Pete McCormack
Stars: George Chuvalo, Henry Cooper, George Foreman
Thrilla in Manila (TV Movie 2008)
Documentary | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A filmed recounting of the final championship boxing match between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier in 1975.

Director: John Dower
Stars: Joe Frazier, Marvis Frazier, Thomas Hauser
Hoop Dreams (1994)
Documentary | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A film following the lives of two inner-city Chicago boys who struggle to become college basketball players on the road to going professional.

Director: Steve James
Stars: William Gates, Arthur Agee, Emma Gates
Tyson (2008)
Documentary | Biography | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A mixture of original interviews and archival footage and photographs sheds light on the life experiences of Mike Tyson.

Director: James Toback
Stars: Mike Tyson, Mills Lane, Trevor Berbick
I Am Ali (2014)
Documentary | Biography | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Unprecedented access to Muhammad Ali's personal archive of "audio journals" as well as interviews and testimonials from his inner circle of family and friends are used to tell the legend's life story.

Director: Clare Lewins
Stars: Muhammad Ali, Muhammad Ali Jnr, Hana Ali
Murderball (2005)
Documentary | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Quadriplegics, who play full-contact rugby in wheelchairs, overcome unimaginable obstacles to compete in the Paralympic Games in Athens, Greece.

Directors: Henry Alex Rubin, Dana Adam Shapiro
Stars: Joe Soares, Keith Cavill, Mark Zupan
Certificate: Passed Biography | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Boxer Rocky Graziano's biopic, based on his autobiography, from childhood to his World Middleweight Championship title win at age 28 in 1947.

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: Paul Newman, Pier Angeli, Everett Sloane
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Muhammad Ali ... Himself
George Foreman ... Himself
Don King ... Himself
James Brown ... Himself
B.B. King ... Himself
Mobutu Sese Seko Mobutu Sese Seko ... Himself (President of Zaire)
Spike Lee ... Himself
Norman Mailer ... Himself - Writer
George Plimpton ... Himself - Writer
Thomas Hauser Thomas Hauser ... Himself
Malick Bowens ... Himself - Artist (as Malik Bowens)
Lloyd Price Lloyd Price ... Himself - Concert Promoter
The Spinners ... Themselves
Miriam Makeba ... Herself
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Drew Bundini Brown Drew Bundini Brown ... Himself - Ali's Ass't Trainer (as Drew 'Bundini' Brown)
Edit

Storyline

It's 1974, Muhammad Ali is 32 and thought by many to be past his prime. George Foreman is ten years younger and the Heavyweight champion of the world. Promoter Don King wants to make a name for himself and offers both fighters five million dollars apiece to fight one another, and when they accept, King has only to come up with the money. He finds a backer in Mobutu Sese Seko, the dictator of Zaire and the "Rumble in the Jungle" is set. A musical festival, featuring the America's top black performers, like James Brown and B.B. King, is also planned. Written by Gary Dickerson <slug@mail.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The untold story of the Rumble in the Jungle

Genres:

Documentary | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for images of violence, brief nudity and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 February 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Amikor királyok voltunk - Muhammad Ali See more »

Edit

Box Office

Gross USA:

$2,666,118, 8 June 1997
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Almost all of the footage was shot in 1974. The film took 23 years to complete because the negatives and rights were caught up in civil suits involving the Liberians who financed it. See more »

Quotes

Muhammad Ali: It is befitting that I leave the game just like I came in, beating a big bad monster who knocks out everybody and no one can whup him. That's when little Cassius Clay from Louisville, Kentucky, came up to stop Sonny Liston. The man who annihilated Floyd Patterson twice. HE WAS GONNA KILL ME! But he hit harder than George. His reach is longer than George's. He's a better boxer than George. And I'm better now than I was when you saw that 22-years old undeveloped kid running from Sonny Liston. I'm...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Life Coach (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm Coming Home
Written by Thom Bell and Linda Creed
Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp. (BMI)
Performed by The Spinners
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

fascinating piece of history, even for non-fight fans
20 September 2002 | by kevink868See all my reviews

It goes nearly without saying that Ali is a transcendent figure of his generation. For those currently in their twenties who did not grow up in Ali era, this film is a glimpse at why the world choked up upon seeing Ali light the flame at the Atlanta Olympiad.

While Gast's footage of Ali in Kinshasa is sparse, interview segments with Plimpton, Mailer and Lee, and a pulsing soundtrack fill in the blanks to tell a surprisingly complete tale. The characters are fascinating: A young Don King, who had not yet made his name; a sullen, menacing George Foreman bearing no resemblance to the huckster we see today; the creepy Mobutu, who is rarely seen though his presence is felt, and Howard Cosell, who appears briefly to predict the defeat of the man who practically created him. Far, FAR superior to Michael Mann's Ali, which lifted huge pieces from this documentary. While Mann's film provides much more for the eye, Gast's "Kings" is a superior example of pure storytelling.


10 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 57 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



Recently Viewed