World Channel Presentation, PBS Plus Presentation, NPS Standalone
Iconic filmmaker Frederick Wiseman turns his novelistic eye to rural Midwesterners to fill in a missing piece in his vision of American life.
A place of violence, but also discipline; the site of fights, but also of community. The boxing gym in modern cities plays a dichotomous role.
Frederick Wiseman has made 39 documentaries and two fiction films. Among his documentaries are Titicut Follies, Welfare, Public Housing, Near Death, La Comédie Française Ou L'amour Joué, La Danse — le Ballet De L'opéra De Paris, and At Berkeley (Independent Lens, 2014). His documentaries are dramatic, narrative films that seek to portray the joy,… Show more sadness, comedy and tragedy of ordinary experience. His films have played in theatres and been broadcast on television in many countries. He is also a theater director and has directed The Last Letter, based on a chapter of Vasily Grossman's novel Life and Fate, and Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days at the Comédie Française. Mr. Wiseman received his BA from Williams College in 1951 and his LLB from Yale Law School in 1954. He has received honorary doctorates from Bowdoin College, Princeton University, and Williams College, among others. He is a MacArthur Fellow, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, and an Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He has won numerous awards, including four Emmys and the Dan David Prize. He is also the recipient of the Career Achievement Award from the Los Angeles Film Society (2013); the George Polk Career Award (2006); the American Society of Cinematographers Distinguished Achievement Award (2006); and the Venice Film Festival Golden Lion (2014); among many others. Show less
Boxing is a sport of contradictions. It can be bloody, hurtful, and cruel, but at the same time it requires dedication, discipline, focus, a grueling work ethic, sacrifice, conditioning and ferocious demands on the body and mind.Boxing Gym centers on the story of Lord’s Gym in Austin, Texas, which was founded by former pro boxer Richard Lord. This gym — as well as others like it across the country — is a community institution: For many, it’s a place to train for the professional ring. For many others, it is also a home, a refuge, a safe place to escape to from the turbulence of the streets, a place where parents bring troubled children.
It is also a prime example of the American “melting pot” where men and women of various races, classes, and ethnic backgrounds meet, talk, and train, and — in some cases — dream together of success, riches, and fame.