The Great White Hope
The Great White Hope (1970)

Although the characters' names were changed, The Great White Hope was a thinly veiled account of the trials and tribulations of boxer Jack Johnson, based on the play by Howard Sackler and directed by Martin Ritt. James Earl Jones stars… More

Directed By:
Rated: PG-13
Running Time:
Release Date: October 16, 1970
DVD Release Date: January 11, 2005
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Critic Score: 43% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Variety Staff

Jones' re-creation of his stage role is an eye-riveting experience. The towering rages and unrestrained joys of which his character was capable are portrayed larger than life.

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Tom Hutchinson
Radio Times

This heavyweight boxing fable... has a knockout performance by James Earl Jones but it only just gets by on points as drama and is undermined by an early form of political correctness.

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Vincent Canby
New York Times

One of those liberal, well-meaning, fervently uncontroversial works that pretend to tackle contemporary problems by finding analogies at a safe remove in history.

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Emanuel Levy

The movie is too theatrical and every idea is spelled out for the audience, but the acting of James Earl Jones and Jane Alexander (both Oscar-nominated) is good.

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Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

Provocative but never challenging.

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TV Guide

The love story between Alexander and Jones is touchingly portrayed.

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More reviews for The Great White Hope

Flixster Audience Score: 66% Flixster User Reviews
Kevin M. Williams
I've been liking me some Marty Ritt films lately, an undiscovered gem for me, and though not quite up to his usual stuff this one'll do in a pinch.… More
Byron Brubaker
Howard Sackler's screenplay holds pretty closely to his stage play script, which I read shortly before watching this. The interracial relationship between… More
jay nixon
The actual history is quite distorted but both James Earl Jones and Jane Alexander give great performances.
John Ballantine
Obama recently had the opportunity to pardon Jack Johnson for his "crimes". Here is the biopic of Johnson as realized by James Earl Jones. Jones… More
Stella Dallas
a fictionalized account of the fascinating life of jack johnson, the first black world heavyweight champ, 1908-1915, played powerfully by james earl jones. for… More
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