The Great Debaters

Content Advisory: There are few swear words, racial slurs, lots of scary and intense violence, including a lynching, and also some uncomfortable scenes. Although there is no nudity, there is a bedroom scene. I watched an edited version that did not include this scene though.


Date watched: 2/8/19

Directed by: Denzel Washington

Starring: Denzel WashingtonForest WhitakerKimberly Elise 

Date Released:2007

Genre: Biography, Drama, Romance

Content Rating: PG-13

Plot Summary: Based on the true story of a proffesor in Wiley Collage, Melvin B. Tolson, played by Denzel Washington. Melvin Tolson was the head of a debate team that rose to the top during the 1930’s and even won against Harvard.

My personal take: The story was great and left you feeling good. It contained scenes that were exciting, emotional, scary, and beautiful. The director did a great job in capturing the full spectrum of emotion in two hours. The acting was great and the story was powerful, though it was a little long, it didn’t feel that way, it kept you entertained the whole time.

Now, no movie is perfect and this one has a few mistakes of it’s own. There were a few factual errors, such as World War I being referred to by that name even though it would have been called the Great War because there hadn’t been a second one yet. Also they did not debate Harvard but instead they debated USC, When confronted about it Denzel Washington said that he used artistic licence because Harvard has a better name.

Although it isn’t perfect, it is certainly very good. It has a great message and is portrayed very well. I would recommend this to anyone who has some down time and or wants to learn more about that time period or the debate team.

Would I recommend this? Yes!

My rating out of ten: 7-Stars Good

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