30 for 30 (2009– )
5.3/10
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Marion Jones: Press Pause 

Few athletes in Olympic history have reached such heights and depths as Marion Jones. After starring at the University of North Carolina and winning gold at the 1997 and '99 World Track and... See full summary »

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Episode credited cast:
Kevin Blackistone ... Himself
... Herself
... Himself
Kelly Naqi ... Herself
Rich Nichols ... Himself
Ron Rapoport ... Himself
William C. Rhoden ... Himself
Nolan Richardson ... Himself
... Himself
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Few athletes in Olympic history have reached such heights and depths as Marion Jones. After starring at the University of North Carolina and winning gold at the 1997 and '99 World Track and Field Championships, her rise to the top culminated at the 2000 Summer Games in Sydney, Australia. There, she captivated the world with her beauty, style and athletic dominance as she sprinted and jumped to three gold medals and two bronze. Eventually, though, her accomplishments and her reputation would be tarnished. For years, Jones denied the increasing speculation that she used performance-enhancing drugs. But in October 2007, she finally admitted what so many had long suspected -- that she had indeed used steroids. Jones was sentenced to six months in prison for lying to federal investigators and soon saw her Olympic achievements disqualified. Now a free woman, Jones is running in a new direction in life and taking time to reflect. Written by ESPN Films

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2 November 2010 (USA)  »

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Features Sydney 2000: Games of the XXVII Olympiad (2000) See more »

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Disappointment
2 September 2016 | by See all my reviews

This documentary does not go very deep into Jones's issues and wrongdoings, and is rather soft- hitting. Although one man interviewed informs us at one point that Marion Jones is a tough woman who knew exactly what she was doing and don't buy into the idea that men around her got her into something she didn't want to be a part of, most of the rest of the interviews which made the cut are making excuses for her; blaming her persecution not on her cheating and lying, but her race and her trainers.

Watching this documentary you'd think that she only got into trouble because while being interviewed by the authorities she actually answered some of the questions honestly instead of walking out of the room for a break. You'd think she was a naive woman whose coach hoodwinked her and media targeted her. We are told that she didn't really need steroids to win, and that even without them, she would have still won two gold medals in Sydney instead of three. (This is just included without any possible retort.) These sorts of ridiculous statements which the documentary is more than happy to promote may make her fans feel warm and fuzzy, but really they just demonstrate the type of whitewashing it is trying to do. Unlike the rest of the 30 for 30 series, this one does not go deeply into the topic and frankly does not sit well alongside most of the other (excellent) films in this series.


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