Mike Tyson has had a life characterised by being hailed as the greatest of heroes, and despised as the most contemptible of villains. Tyson's
early boxing record was extraordinary, making him a genuine phenomenon, and at the end of the 1980s, he had become the undisputed champion of the world. His fall from grace was spectacular. A rape conviction in 1992 saw him serve 3 years in prison, while the big money comeback he made following his release bought him further disgrace when he bit a chunk out of Evander Holyfield's ear during a fight in 1997, an action that shamed the sport he had once loved and that had paid him so handsomely.
James Toback's association with Tyson dates back to when the boxer visited the set of The Pick-Up Artist, and Tyson appeared in Toback's films Black and White and When Will I Be Loved. Toback presents his friend talking about all aspects of his life and career, and, despite Tyson being the sole voice of the film, this is very effective and affecting documentary film-making, revealing its subject as a complex and damaged individual. Employing some neat technical tricks, the film features footage of the boxer as a young man which remind you that his downfall meant not only personal tragedies for all concerned, but how big a blow it was to the sport. No heavyweight has been anywhere near as exciting since.
Directed by: James Toback
Distributor: Revolver Entertainment
Running time: 90min
Added by Craig Grobler on September 11, 2008