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Boxing Movies That You Must Watch

Pugilists continue growing in popularity as the years pass, and boxing films are no exception, going as popular as the boxing odds now. Over time, films have evolved from mere punching movies just for the spectacle. Today they are about hard work, discipline- personal toil.

At the top of the list are heavyweight classics, the best ones being Rocky and Raging bull, vigorous documentaries like the unforgivable blackness or when we were kings, and many others.

Boxing films now fall under the drama genre, mainly focusing on relationships and enemies in and out of the ring. 

Here are some that will blow your mind.

Southpaw (2015)

Initially, the movie’s plot takes the traditional boxing trope until Jake Gyllenhaal takes the lead role, laying it up as a drama. The film focuses on a left-handed boxer who hits rock bottom at the peak of his career after the demise of his wife.

Struggling with fear and grief combined with inner demons, Jake attempts to regain his former glory- which he does.

Gyllenhaal is a hero in making a comeback, showing the emotional, physical, and mental struggles he endured to regain his title.

Champion (1949)

The Noir-classic is a perfect example of how distractions can destroy any sports life. In Champion, the famous Kirk Douglas stars as Midge Kelly, one whose born talent of the ring lays the foundation of his career as a pugilist.

Unlike in most boxing movies, where they portray protagonists as likable, in this film, Kelly is brought out as a character who loses himself to a toxic chain of constant adultery and greed.

He stands to bring out the dark side of boxing.

Before The Fall (2004)

From the 2000s, the German movie is an exciting film that showcases boxing from the point of view of a teenage boy. 

As a boxing enthusiast, Friedrich Weimer desired to enroll in the Nazi academy, as it was the only chance he had to showcase his talents and sharpen his skills. As expected, the school opened him up to a pool of opportunities for his career, but it came with a catch. 

He was brainwashed with two impossible choices- his job or his free will. The film stands out from others when it brings out intense politics and portrays several introspective moments.

Creed (2015)

In 2015, after six films in the last 30 years, the Rocky franchise returned with a spinoff titled Creed. Sylvester Stallone plays a famous boxer, Rocky Balboa, assuming the role of a coach. Michael B Jordan plays the lead player and an upcoming boxer, Adonis Creed, who is the son of former champion Apollo Creed.

Creed finds favor from a highly motivated protagonist who is enthusiastic about boxing as rocky in his best days.

Aside from the dramatic sides of the film, Creed’s boxing scenes are convincing and realistic, contributed by the fact that it includes real-life boxers like Gabriel Rosado.

The Hurricane (1999)

The Hurricane, played by Denzel Washington, starts as a drama, which picks up as a thriller as it progresses. It tells the story of how Robin Carter was wrongfully convicted, then later released with the help of a teenager and his foster family.

The rage burning in Denzel is seen both in matches and as he struggles to cope with his life in prison. The hurricane pictures one of Denzel Washington’s best performances

The Fighter (2010)

Directed by David O Russel, The fighter stars Christian Bale and Mark Wahlberg as brothers who both struggle with boxing. On one end, Wahlberg’s Micky Ward struggles to get his career back on its feet, while on the other, Bale’s Dicky Eklund is a former pro boxer dealing with severe cocaine addictions.

Instead of basing its scenes on pure boxing, the film attempts to show issues that boxers face and the dilemmas they face before going to the actual game.

Christian Bale is brought out as a boxer with a habit of self-destruction. It is such scenes that keep you glued to your screen.

Cinderella Man (2005)

Russel Crowe starred as James Braddock, a former heavyweight champion. The film is famous for bringing out depression, as the main character struggles with huge financial loss, much like most of America. The star is desperate to make his way back to the top.


Boxing films remain relevant to this day, especially with the current trends where they focus more on their players’ professional and personal struggles. They have lessons one could apply to real life and tips for upcoming professional boxers, like in the Champion.


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