"Honesty Is the Best Policy"
In RESURRECTING THE CHAMP, a boxing journalist who wants to write bigger stories and lift himself up in his son’s eyes goes around his difficult boss to do a story on a homeless black man who claims to be a famous boxer from the 1950s who everyone thought was dead. RESURRECTING THE CHAMP is a small, but powerful, incisive and impressive movie with a very strong moral worldview, but it does have some foul language and boxing violence, although not quite as strong as other modern movies in the genre.
RESURRECTING THE CHAMP, inspired by a true story, is a small, but powerful gem about integrity, honesty and family relationships, especially relationships between fathers and sons.
Josh Hartnett plays a Denver sports journalist named Erik Kernan, who’s trying to come out from the shadow of his famous father who was a beloved boxing announcer. Abandoned by his father at a young age, Erik is trying to be a good father to his son, Teddy, even though he’s separated from his wife, Joyce, who works at the same newspaper. Erik has a tendency to exaggerate his career when he’s with his son, however. For instance, he claims to have golfed with Muhammed Ali but he only covered a celebrity golf tournament. The problem is, Erik’s boss at the paper thinks Erik’s writing needs improving and won’t let Erik cover any other big sport except boxing.
Then, Erik stumbles upon a black homeless man, played by Samuel L. Jackson, who claims to be “Battling Bob” Satterfield, a boxer from the 1950s who just missed becoming heavyweight champion. Everybody thought Satterfield was dead, but after a little research, Erik starts interviewing Bob for a potential magazine story that could change Erik’s journalistic career. However, Erik is mad at his boss, so he neglects to tell his boss that he’s writing the story for the paper’s magazine section. The chance to publish a big story improves Erik’s relationship with his son and his wife, but there’s a fly in the printer’s ink that may unravel everything Erik’s working for.
RESURRECTING THE CHAMP is a powerfully written, directed and acted story about honesty, integrity and the relationship between fathers and sons. It impressively covers these issues in a deep, incisive way that never gets in the way of the story but enhances it. Ultimately uplifting, the movie also has a very strong moral worldview. RESURRECTING THE CHAMP is unique compared to other movies about the issues it covers because it shows that not only do sons need love and approval from their fathers but fathers also need love and approval from their sons.
Samuel L. Jackson gives an Oscar-caliber performance as the title character. The rest of the cast also does an excellent job. This is by far Director Rod Lurie’s best work, whose other movies have had some major problems. The movie does contain, however, some foul language and boxing violence, but the language and violence is not as strong as some other boxing movies, such as MOVIEGUIDE® Award-winner CINDERELLA MAN. Still, this is not a movie for young children, and MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution for children age 10-13.
(BBB, C, LLL, VV, N, A, D, M) Very strong moral worldview with a positive reference and positive appeals to God at a couple points and an implied Christian funeral with a clergyman; about 21 obscenities (including one “f” word from an unseen character on the phone), five strong profanities and three light profanities which are also definite appeals to God during a time of great stress; some boxing violence in live and televised boxing scenes and on the street, including young men try to beat up much older homeless man and former boxer, drop of blood from boxing match hits journalist’s writing pad but camera does not show the blow that caused it, fighters knocked unconscious, and back of man’s head hits trash dumpster; no sex scenes but young woman is interested in man separated from his wife but man leaves the dance floor where they were to call his wife and go to see her; upper male nudity in boxing ring; alcohol use; smoking; and, lying, exaggerating one’s importance to one’s son and going behind someone’s back because they mistreat you, but all or nearly all of these are rebuked.
In RESURRECTING THE CHAMP, Josh Hartnett plays Erik Kernan, a Denver journalist resentful of his boss who only lets him cover boxing matches. Separated from his wife, who also works at the paper, Erik is trying to lift himself up in his son’s eyes, not to mention his wife’s. So, he latches onto a story about a homeless black man, played by Samuel L. Jackson, who claims to be “Battling Bob” Satterfield, a boxer from the 1950s who almost became heavyweight champ. There’s a fly in the printer’s ink, however, that may unravel everything Erik’s worked for.
RESURRECTING THE CHAMP is a powerfully written, directed and acted story about honesty, integrity and the relationship between fathers and sons. Ultimately uplifting, the movie has a very strong moral worldview. It shows that not only do sons need love and approval from their fathers but fathers also need love and approval from their sons. Samuel L. Jackson gives an Oscar-caliber performance as the title character. The movie does contain, however, some foul language and boxing violence, so this is not a movie for young children, and MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution for children age 9-13.