August 26, 2013 12:54 pm
It was a memorable opening weekend for The Trials of Muhammad Ali in New York. Excited movie goers - including cinema legend Spike Lee, pictured here with Trials director Bill Siegel - packed into the IFC Center for their chance to see what Dave Zirin of The Nation called "the best documentary ever made" about the champ, writing "This is a special film. It should be treasured by anyone who cares about sports, politics, the 1960s or the vivacious, loquacious, bodacious, Muhammad Ali."
Director Bill Siegal had a busy week promoting the film. Bill gave some fantastic interviews, including WNYC's The Leonard Lopate Show, and on NPR's Tell Me More. Bill also had two in-depth Q&A sessions with audiences after screening his film, and based on this first week of screenings, it seems that both critics and audiences alike adore this new take on Ali.
Andrew O’Hehir wrote a wonderful article for Salon, noting the parallels between how those who have struggled to recognize Chelsea Manning echo those who refused to recognize Muhammad Ali and continued calling him Cassius Clay. O'Hehir praises the film, saying that “Siegel sheds fascinating new light on one of the most elusive and complicated public figures of the 20th century. Anyone who wants to understand what happened to America during those turbulent years needs to see this film.”
You can still get tickets to see the film at IFC Center now! See a video of Bill introducing the film at IFC Center, and stressing the important role of documentary filmmaking as "recovering history."