VM Movies
IMDB Rating:
Stephen Hopkins
Jason Sudeikis
Carice van Houten
Amanda Crew
Jeremy Irons
Release date:
19 Feb 2016
MPAA Rating:
Production company(s):
Forecast Pictures, Solofilms, JoBro Productions & Film Finance
Amanda S:

It's been a long while since I've seen anything from director Stephen Hopkins; It seems he's been filming a lot of TV in recent years. Two films of the nineties, directed by Hopkins have been favorites of mine and cult classics of others, firstly the Emilio Estevez, Cuba Gooding Jr. And Denis Leary starrer 'Judgement Night' and then Jeff Bridges and Tommy Lee Jones under-rated film 'Blown Away' both gripping and well made thrillers.

He hasn't lost his touch with 'Race', instantly capturing 1930's American at a time of discrimination basing this film of the Olympic champion Jesse Owens who traveled to pre-war Nazi Germany for the 1936 Olympics. Though I'm not sure how much of it is actually factual as there has been some reports of irregularities.

The cast is strong yet boldly choosing a fairly unknown, newcomer Stephan James as the lead. The only fault maybe, not attracting a larger audience due to the fresh face, but nonetheless, he performs amazingly well. Jason Sudeikis, is a completely different actor, this being his first serious, non-comical role and he out performs all his previous films, proving what a good actor he is, playing trainer Larry Synder.

Other cast members include Game Of Thrones' Melisandre, Carice van Houten playing Germany filmmaker trying to capture the unrestricted events of the Olympics. William Hurt and the ever busy Jeremy Irons, being his fourth film to pop up on my screen this year, both playing American officials deciding the political stance.

The film isn't solely about challenging discrimination and the Olympics, but also about tolerance, change, wanting to change and good sportsmanship. The script is amazing with some clever and good pieces, it's got great structure and doesn't lose pace covering a lot of ground. I'm surprised at the score, being composed by Rachel Port-man, it didn't seem like her usual work but still, very triumphant and impressive.

There's a fine balance between drama and running and jumping. The action is perfectly captured without the over dramatics, and allowing the acting and scenery to portray the feeling and excitement. One scene in particular when Jesse Owens enters the stadium for the first time, standing in awe, especially with the Zeppelin fly-by.

Ignoring the minor glitches in history, it's tells a good story and you leave having a greater admiration for both star and character. A surprising hit for me.

An apt title on many levels, "Race" is your basic sports movie, but about a significant and important individual. While it feels a bit like "Bridge of Spies" met "42", the one qualm I have with the film is the "will-he-or-won't-he" question about the Olympics. Anyone with a basic understanding of history will know that he participated, so I felt playing up the drama of that point a little heavy handed (a little bit would have been fine). In the end, there was still a risk of going to the Olympics, since a loss would have validated everything the Nazis stood for. That being said, a win demolishes the superiority of hateful human beings.
Patricia D:
If you're like me and a fan of these true story sports dramas, you will enjoy this film. It's an engaging biopic. The story is very fascinating, and inspirational do in large part to the powerful leading performance of Stephen James as Jesse Owens. He carries this film all the way and shows a lot of the character physically and emotionally. He also has a strong supporting cast particularly Jason Sudeikis playing Jesse's coach and Jeremy Irons who plays Avery Brundage, a man who does everything in his power to get the government to except Negros and Jews to participate in these Olympic games. This movie reminds me a lot of the films ''42'' and ''Invictus'', but it's worth a watch. The writing is adequate, good camera work, talented cast, and an inspirational story. It's a film to Watch.
Heather P:
Only one other OD Geezer Who Goes To The Matinee Alone showed up and she seemed to be watching porn on her smart phone. This is the story of one of the greatest athletes in history and his rise to Olympic Champion. More than adequately played by Stephan James it was a wonderful movie, just too freaking long. Jason Sudeikis was only adequate as Owen's coach. The big standout was Jeremy Irons as Avery Brundage the dictatorial head of the US Olympic Committee. All of the movie contrasts racism in the US with the rise of Nazism in Germany. A lot of this is uncomfortable to watch, but gives a wonderful perspective on Owen's achievements. Other than being a bit too long in my estimation, this is a very good movie and I recommend it.
Liam P:
Great movie starring Stephen James as Jesse Owens I think but not 100 percent positive. This movie is my first movie with 50 of my friends in one theater and we all saw it and I am not exaggerating, 50 people talking and yelling at the screen during the previews, too Much love. Too many romantic movies now, need to make better action movies or good historical movies. I enjoyed race a lot, I learned new things about the Olympics that they have a committee and reasoned with the Nazis to take down their Nazis flag, all Nazis flags during the Olympics and let everybody compete including colored people and jewish people. Never knew why the Nazis hated black, gay, or Jewish people in the first place. I get to learn how Jesse Owens begins becoming a runner. Bet his coach at ohio state university for the fasted running time for the 100 yard dash. Felt the emotion of this movie and how sad and how uplifting this movie is.
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Jesse Owens' quest to become the greatest track and field athlete in history thrusts him onto the world stage of the 1936 Olympics, where he faces off against Adolf Hitler's vision of Aryan supremacy.