The Express (The Ernie Davis Story) - 3 Stars (Good)
When Hollywood screenwriters tackle an authentic story based on a book, they generally take surprising liberties while telling the tale within the silver screen, almost like the important story had not been good enough to tell. "The Express" is certainly a good example.
Make no mistake, The Express is definitely an good movie that teaches some important lessons about getting along in the diverse culture while maturing within the 1940s, as well as its message is timeless because racism - despite our progress - still exists in America.
It is unfortunate that this title of movie The Express wasn't expanded being more readily recognizable through the generations that followed. A better title would have been "The Elmira Express - The Ernie Davis Story". No one moving into another generation would refer to The Express.
This movie is dependant on Robert Gallagher's book, "Ernie Davis: The Elmira Express, the Story of your Heisman Trophy Winner".
Ernie Davis was one of the big nfl and college football players to ever step on the field. He has also been the 1st African American to win the Heisman Trophy as College Football's Player in the Year in 1961. Davis followed the fantastic All-American Jim Brown (arguably the very best running back ever) to Syracuse to experience to the Orangemen. He was presented Jim Brown's No. 44 to make use of during his career.
The Express, compiled by Charles Leavitt and directed by Gary Fleder, couldn't leave good enough alone by recognizing well-known ill treatment Ernie Davis received from white racist fans, his opponents for the field, his very own teammates, his fellow students, hotel owners would you not allow African Americans as guests, etc.
By scheming to make an unjust and bad situation even more difficult, they altered the particular facts of some games and scores within the film, and used some really racist language to inflame the moviegoers.
This was undesirable because a great many other issues around the therapy for a few African American players around the team were well handled.
Ernie Davis would lead Syracuse to its first NCAA National Championship during his sophomore season in 1959 if the Orangemen went undefeated, beating No. 2-ranked Texas 23-14 within the Cotton Bowl. He seemed to be voted Most Valuable Player inside the Cotton Bowl being a junior in 1960, and MVP with the Liberty Bowl being a senior in 1961.
Davis became the initial African American to get the No. 1 pick inside the 1962 NFL Draft. He was selected here through the Washington Redskins, who traded him for the Cleveland Browns for Bobby Mitchell plus a first-round draft choice.
In the summertime of 1962, Davis was identified as having acute monocytic leukemia, an incurable cancer with the blood or bone marrow, and died on May 18, 1963. More than 10,000 family, friends and fans paid their respects at his wake in Elmira, NY. Ernie Davis was not ever able to learn 1 game from the National Football League.
Ernie Davis chose never to fight racism with violence, but to make use of the football field as his technique of establishing his stature weight loss than the usual talented, gifted athlete, but to be a man of integrity and honor among men. Those who discriminated against Ernie Davis and folks coming from all races must be ashamed and remorseful.
This film benefited greatly by some outstanding acting performances by Rob Brown (Ernie Davis), Dennis Quaid (Syracuse coach Ben Schwartzwalder), Omar Benson Miller (Ernie's teammate Jack Buckley), Charles S. Dutton (Ernie's grandfather Willie "Pops" Davis), and Nicole Behaire (Ernie's girlfriend Sarah Ward).
The Express, released in 2008, had positive reviews (a 72% favorable rating on Rotten Tomatoes), grossed only $9.six million in revenue, and, regrettably, failed to receive just one nomination one of the award organizations. Such is life.
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