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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Frazier's side of the story
This story has been waiting to be told for quite some time. As a big boxing fan, especially with the dearth of good heavyweights in this current era (maybe David Haye can change that) it is great to watch two fighters from the Golden Age of the heavyweight division going properly toe to toe. But there is so much more to this documentary, and it paints a rather different...
Published on 14 Nov 2008 by Midlands Telly Addict

versus
10 of 18 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Great documentary but this DVD is cut
This is a great documentary but unfortunately this DVD is cut by 5 minutes most notably footage of the 1971 Ali v Frazier fight when it was shown recently on TV we were shown actual fight footage, on this DVD all you get is photographs which doesn't show the knockdown punch that Frazier delivers to Ali the interviewees are talking about it but we can't see it which is a...
Published on 22 Nov 2008 by RobW285


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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Frazier's side of the story, 14 Nov 2008
This review is from: Thriller In Manila [DVD] (DVD)
This story has been waiting to be told for quite some time. As a big boxing fan, especially with the dearth of good heavyweights in this current era (maybe David Haye can change that) it is great to watch two fighters from the Golden Age of the heavyweight division going properly toe to toe. But there is so much more to this documentary, and it paints a rather different picture of Muhammed Ali than the vast majority of any other history on his conduct inside and outside of the ring. Fantastic interviews and fight footage, well done Channel 4!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb documentary, 18 Nov 2008
This review is from: Thriller In Manila [DVD] (DVD)
A perfect, yet in many ways a very different, companion to the brilliant documentary When We Were Kings. Saw this on TV - reviting stuff and a very different portayal of the mighty Ali as was brought forward in When We Were Kings.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All Time Classic, 15 Feb 2010
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N. M. White (Leicester, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Thriller In Manila [DVD] (DVD)
This DVD documents the build up, aftermath and in my opinion the greatest fight in heavyweight history. It also features great interviews with the "less well known" (compared to Ali) Smokin' Joe Frazier. A must watch for boxing fans.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Alternative picture of a legend, 17 Jun 2009
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Downesyboy (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Thriller In Manila [DVD] (DVD)
As the other reviewers have said - this is the view of the fight from the point of view of Smokin' Joe and does not paint Ali in a good light at all. It would have been a perfect package if more people from the Ali camp had made contemporary comments, i would love to have heard what Don King had to say about the fight with the benefit of years of hindsight. it would also have been great if the fight had been included in total but maybe copyright issues got in the way of that.

Also of interest to us (but probably not the average fight fan) were the shots of the Philippines and the Marcos family. My wife was a 9 year old growing up in Manila at the time and remembers the Ali cavalcade from the airport.

Overall, a 4 1/2**** and definitely recommed seeing it but with a couple of additions it would have been a definite 5*****
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thriller In Manila [DVD] [2008], 5 May 2009
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T. Osman (London, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Thriller In Manila [DVD] (DVD)
Well done to Channel 4, I first viewed this on More 4 late last year and would have to say one of the best documentaries I have seen in years. I had to have a copy for my collection the extra features are poor, the extended interviews where pointless and understand why it was trimmed from the main feature. But for all Boxing fans this is a must you will enjoy it!!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Untold truth, 5 Jan 2009
This review is from: Thriller In Manila [DVD] (DVD)
A must watch for all boxing fans. This doc gives the untold story behind these two greats. Would Ali be still thought as the greatest if Joe was alowed to come out for the 15th? Its sad that Joe never got the chance (even tho he couldnt see!) And for this, Joe still holds a gruge to this day. True he dont forgive Ali for all the racist jibes he constanly threw at Joe. I cant help thinking if Joe one the fight he wouldnt hold the grudge. A must for every boxing fans dvd collection.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gruelling and compelling, 1 April 2012
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This review is from: Thriller In Manila [DVD] (DVD)
This makes the perfect companion piece to When We Were Kings [DVD] [1997] which is something of a hagiography to Ali. In this documentary you get a more critical view of him and I suspect the real man lies somewhere between the two. Having said that, I felt 'Manila' overeggs its case. Yes, Frazier did petition the authorities to get Ali's boxing licence reinstated but I don't think it was entirely altruistic. He wanted Ali to get his licence, so he could meet him in the ring and prove his superiority - i.e. he had an ulterior motive.

Putting aside the personality and politics of it, this is quite a conventional documentary that tells an extraordinary story. The talking heads are good, though lack the gravitas of, say, Norman Mailer in 'Kings'; there is however, the acerbic Ferdie Pacheco (Ali's doctor). The other major difference with 'Kings' is that whereas the Zaire film only gives 10 mins to the actual fight, almost a third of the running time of 'Manila' is dedicated to what must be the most brutal fight in boxing history. The result is gruelling, compelling and essential viewing.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bitter, spitefull and hateful ..... the other side of Ali, 14 May 2009
By 
N. Thompson "Beaker" (Hull, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Thriller In Manila [DVD] (DVD)
We all think we know Muhammad Ali; his witt; his charisma; his intelligence and his career that saw him being recognised as the greatest heavyweight fighter of all time. This documentary however tries to tell the story of the epic encounter (Ali v Frazier) through the eyes of the less popular Smokin' Joe Frazier. Through this film we see Ali's darker side of his personality and how he treated Frazier with contempt and with hatred.

This film isnt trying to say that Ali was a horrible person but instead balances out all the hero-worship and praise that is heaped on Ali with an honest account of Ali's darker side.

Joe Frazier and Muhammed Ali gave boxing and the sporting world as a whole; its greatest rivalry lasting over 3 fights. On this DVD you will see that Fazier still hates the man that taunted him in the 70's. You will realise that this hatred will stay with Joe until he die's.

This is a great documentary and the best sports film I have seen in years.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars its all about joe, 18 Oct 2009
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This review is from: Thriller In Manila [DVD] (DVD)
great doc, you will leave it thinking about ali in a different light.
very revealing, highly recommended
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Superb Documentary, 15 Jun 2013
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This review is from: Thriller In Manila [DVD] (DVD)
An excellent film. John Dower has made a compelling documentary with great sympathy to the less celebrated Joe Frazier. The build up, background and aftermath of this epic boxing event are superbly conveyed.
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