The Great Debaters

The Great Debaters

DVD - 2008
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MPAA rating: PG-13; strong thematic material including violence and disturbing images, language, and brief sexuality.
Melvin B. Tolson is a professor at Wiley College in Texas. Wiley is a small African-American college. In 1935, Tolson inspired students to form the school's first debate team. Tolson turns a group of underdog students into a historically elite debate team which goes on to challenge Harvard in the national championship. Inspired by a true story.
Publisher: Santa Monica, CA : Distributed by Genius Products, c2008
Edition: Widescreen version
ISBN: 9781594450273
1594450277
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (124 min.) : sd., col. ; 4 3/4 in

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m
Miller1114
Mar 16, 2017

This is one of my favorite movies. It didn't get the acclaim it most certainly deserves.

t
tenet
Jan 15, 2017

Rated 10/10. Well done.

f
firefly5
Oct 12, 2015

Excellent movie!

r
redworc
Feb 08, 2015

A good movie. Enlightening. Denzel turns in his usual good performance.

t
tj_is_cool
Dec 26, 2013

Quite entertaining. The outcome was never in doubt.

b
biblioQ
Oct 31, 2013

The best part, for me, was in the extras, where the original people that the film was based on were interviewed. Black students in the 1930s who had to face discrimination and racism, but were determined and inspired by their professor to become the best debating team in the U.S.

lasertravis Feb 17, 2013

Well acted, inspirational period piece of black history. The story did drag at times and the love story was unnecessary. However, this was a good drama. Excels as a period piece as well. The music, sets, dialogue and clothing design all looked great.

voisjoe1 Feb 07, 2013

This is an amazing, emotional story of 1935 segregationist Texas where students from a small Negro college, Wiley College, become one of the best debating teams of the entire United States. One of the debaters, James Farmer, in college at the age of 14, would one day become one of the top 5 civil rights leaders in the United States. At one point in its history, Wiley College would go ten years without a debating loss, although they did lose at least one time during this film. Much more emotional and threatening than one would expect about a subject like college debating. After all, some of these students did see a lynching and would face racist mobs and sheriffs.

s
saphire__257
Dec 31, 2009

i thought debates were not that interesting but this movie changed my mind.

m
Michael
Jul 22, 2008

This was a great colloboration of some very lofty people in the U.S. Black Community associated with Hollywood entertainment. And rightly so - it depicts the plight of Blacks in the 30's trying to sow the seeds of a better life for their race, while having to fight not only discrimination, but also wholesale murder and violence against their own people by an unenlightened America. The movie had enough slow spots in it for me to fast forward it @ 2X play with subtles on, to still get the gist of what was happening - but at a faster pace. But in the end, I came away better for having watched this piece of Americana because it touched me on all the levels that Denzel Washington telelegraphed ,as both director and lead actor. I got the oppressive state of things in those days... and what God-fearing, law abiding Blacks had to do, just to survive. I also got the redeeming glow that came with the personal victories documented in each leading actor as potential threats were over-come and new light and vision shone through with each new success.
I'd highly recommend this movie.

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Violet_Zebu_5
Apr 24, 2012

Violet_Zebu_5 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

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Teyfor8Wyoma
Jun 11, 2011

Teyfor8Wyoma thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

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Gearoid
Mar 07, 2011

Gearoid thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

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joseph
Jul 22, 2008

joseph thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

Notices

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Teyfor8Wyoma
Jun 11, 2011

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.

t
Teyfor8Wyoma
Jun 11, 2011

Violence: Lynch mobs, beatings

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SurreySemiahmoo
Aug 25, 2014

When the nation was in need, he inspired them to give us hope.

t
Teyfor8Wyoma
Jun 13, 2011

M. Tolson: Who is your opponent?
Students: He doesn't exist!

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