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Jim Brown All American
Jim Brown All American
Actors: Art Modell, Walter Beach, Ed Walsh, Sam Oakley, Ed Corley
Director: Spike Lee
Genres: Indie & Art House, Sports, Documentary
NR     2004     2hr 20min

Spike Lee directs a flawed but fascinating portrait of the sports legend, actor, and activist in Jim Brown: All American. Interviewing former coaches, teammates, and celebrity observers (including Oliver Stone), and with B...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Art Modell, Walter Beach, Ed Walsh, Sam Oakley, Ed Corley
Director: Spike Lee
Creators: Ellen Kuras, Mark Fason, Mike Ellis, Rick Bernstein, Ross Greenburg, Samuel D. Pollard
Genres: Indie & Art House, Sports, Documentary
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Basketball, Football (American), Documentary
Studio: Hbo Home Video
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 08/24/2004
Release Year: 2004
Run Time: 2hr 20min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Member Movie Reviews

Reviewed on 11/21/2013...
This incredibly detailed documentary has actual footage of Jim in high school, college, and of course the NFL. This is a treasure!

Don't miss out!

Movie Reviews

Complex Subject; Complex Life
Minister 8-Ball | Albany, NY | 12/01/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This documentary is probably more balanced thatn ESPN's and FOX's versions combined. Subjects like Jim Brown are difficult to be encapsuled in such a short time, but Spike probably did as good a job as any filmmaker could.

I also agree agout the balance concerning his legal issues. Allowing multiple parties to express their perspectives gives the viewer the responsibility to make up his/her own mind.

The most impressive thing was Jim expressing lament and remorse for not being the father he wanted to be for his children (prior to his present marriage to Monique and their two children). He took responsibility for their development and stated that by dealing with his personal survival and conflict with their respective mothers, the children suffer.

Overall, I highly recommend this documetary to anyone who says that athletes are one-dimensional and superficial."
Stick to Documentaries, Spike Lee!
Yasha Banana | 08/14/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Spike Lee's "Four Little Girls" and "When the Levees Broke" rank as two of the best documentaries in the history of the genre. His offering on Jim Brown, obviously a less-weighty subject, is nevertheless an admirable effort on his part.

I love Spike Lee's documentaries, but I don't care for his movies. What disappoints me about his movies is how *cynical* they are. Whereas his documentarties are just the opposite -- intelligent, inspiring, politically-committed. They represent, to my way of thinking, his best efforts as an artist.

One can hear in his voice-over comments not only his deep-felt desire to tell Jim Brown's story "like it is," the good as well as the bad, but also the clarion call of his social and political consciousness.

American filmakers take note -- films are not just an industry, they can and should be a force for social good. And Spike Lee has shown that he can lead the way.

Nothing achieves the level of "art" without an acknowledgement by the artist of the social, political and economic forces that fundamentally influence our lives.

So you're in the game, Spike Lee. Don't let us down!"
Jim Brown is still breaking tackles
J. L LaRegina | New Jersey | 11/15/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)

"JIM BROWN: ALL AMERICAN is just that, as the story of athlete/actor/philanthropist Jim Brown says as much about America as it does about the man. I don't think I need to give examples of what I mean when I say one's view of Jim Brown reveals no less than how he or she sees the United States.

While I recommend this documentary, I don't rate it higher because of the expectations I took to it. JIM BROWN: ALL AMERICAN is a Home Box Office presentation of a Spike Lee film about Jim Brown, after all! The quality of H.B.O. television is an oasis from the vast wasteland of the medium. Spike Lee is one of our premiere filmmakers. With such a creative force behind JIM BROWN: ALL AMERICAN, I envisioned nothing less than the movie version of Jim Brown's dead honest 1989 autobiography OUT OF BOUNDS, where with just words on paper the man flattened me, giving me an idea of how the football players whose tackles he so easily broke every season must have felt watching him hurtle by, let alone those who challenged him in other ways.

JIM BROWN: ALL AMERICAN has its moments, showing us this man who seems to have a wall between himself and you; at times even Jim Brown's children feel they must keep their distance. Yet with his ventures such as Amer-I-Can he reaches out, seeking to help others realize their potential. The wall keeping you from getting near Jim Brown seems to be just who he is, and those who try to penetrate it can end up like yet another gridiron defender tumbling in in grass and dirt, feeling foolish for trying to take him down.

On the whole, though, JIM BROWN: ALL AMERICAN does not keep up the intensity I anticipated. But again, maybe I was just expecting too much.

I'll say this. Without blowing how JIM BROWN: ALL AMERICAN ends, its final scene touched me. And when you see the film, you will know the emotional wallop with which it concludes comes not from what's obvious but because it takes you as close to Jim Brown as such a daunting man could allow.