I join NewsTalk 1010 host Jim Richards on the coast-to-coast-to-coast late night “NewsTalk Tonight” to play the game “Did Richard Crouse Like This?” This week we talk about the coming-of-age story “Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret,” the sports biopic “Big George Foreman” and the relationship dramedy “The End of Sex.”
I joined CP24 to have a look at new movies coming to VOD, streaming services and theatres. Today we talk about the coming-of-age story “Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret,” the sports biopic “Big George Foreman” and the relationship dramedy “The End of Sex.”
I join “CP24 Breakfast” to talk about what to see in theatres and on streaming service this weekend, including the sports biopic “Big George Foreman,” the true crime series “Love & Death” ion Crave and the Netflix special “The Light We Carry: Michelle Obama & Oprah Winfrey.”
I sit in with CKTB morning show host Tim Denis to have a look at the coming-of-age story “Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret,” the sports biopic “Big George Foreman” and the relationship dramedy “The End of Sex.”
I sit in on the CFRA Ottawa morning show with host Bill Carroll to talk the new movies coming to theatres including the coming-of-age story “Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret,” the sports biopic “Big George Foreman” and the relationship dramedy “The End of Sex.”
Watch as I review three movies in less time than it takes to roll the dice! Have a look as I race against the clock to tell you about the coming-of-age story “Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret,” the sports biopic “Big George Foreman” and the relationship dramedy “The End of Sex.”
To some people he is an “as seen on TV” pitchman who spent much of the last thirty years shilling for the Lean Mean Fat-Reducing Grilling Machine. To others he is an indestructible two-time world heavyweight champion and an Olympic gold medalist. To still others, he is Reverend Foreman, a man of faith who preached on street corners before becoming the minister of the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ in Houston.
He’s George Foreman, the subject of “Big George Foreman: The Miraculous Story of the Once and Future Heavyweight Champion of the World,” a new biopic now playing in theatres.
When we first meet Foreman (Khris Davis) he is a young boxer from an impoverished background with a mighty punch and anger issues. “George should change his name from Foreman to Poor-man,” taunt the kids at his school.
Scarred by a troubled past, and narrowly avoiding being arrested, he leaves Houston to find “his unrealized potential” with the Job Corps, a government run vocational training center.
It’s here, under the tutelage of trainer Doc Broadus (Forest Whitaker), that he learns to channel his anger into a winning streak in the squared circle. “Listen to me George,” says Broadus, “you got a punch like I’ve never seen. But in every battle, the greatest foe we will combat, is in here,” he continues, pointing at the fighter’s forehead.
After the 1968 Summer Olympics, where he won a gold medal in the boxing/heavyweight division, he followed a string of knockouts to the big time, a 1972 match against the undefeated and undisputed World Heavyweight Champion Joe Frazier. He walked into the ring a 3:1 underdog, and left it with a champion belt.
Two years later he lost the belt to Muhammad Ali (Sullivan Jones) at the historic “Rumble in the Jungle” in Zaire. With no title, he spent the balance of the 1970s chasing a rematch and another chance at the belt before a near death experience set him on a spiritual path that saw him spend ten years as a minister. “It’s like He reached inside me and took all my anger,” he says. “I can’t even make a fist anymore.”
When his church and community center fall into financial trouble, he laces up the gloves again. “There’s only two thongs I know how to do,” he says, “box and preach. And preachin’ won’t pay the bills.”
Sports commentators call him an old man in a young man’s game, but he is a minister on a mission, and unbelievably, becomes, at age 45, the oldest World Heavyweight Boxing Champion ever.
“Big George Foreman” is a by-the-book biopic, by the way of the good book. It’s a standard, faith-based cradle to grill biography that hits the highs and some of the lows—like hiding under an open sewer pipe to avoid police—in service of its messaging.
“Raging Bull” this ain’t.
Davis captures the glower, born out of internalized anger, that characterized Foreman’s early career, and the lighter attitude that came to the fore in his later life. He makes Foreman a compelling, charismatic character, despite a script that plays it safe and without a hint of grit.
“Big George Foreman” shaves down all the rough edges of the boxer’s story, replacing them with uplift and life lessons. It never feels entirely authentic, but its messages of the importance of faith are heard loud and clear.