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The 2016 historical sports drama movie, "Race," embodies the strength of the human spirit and the power of perseverance. Led by a brilliant cast featuring Stephan James, Jason Sudeikis, and Eli Goree, the movie is an emotional, inspiring, and thrilling story whose overall effect is intensified due to the fierce reality of the events around which it revolves. The title of the movie, "Race," carries a dual meaning—for not only is it based on the thrilling world of track-and-field athletics, it also touches upon the racial abhorrence that prevailed during the period in which the story is set.

Directed skillfully by Stephen Hopkins, "Race" tells the extraordinary story of Jesse Owens, portrayed by Stephan James, an African-American athletic prodigy who defied intense racism and discrimination to compete and excel in the 1936 Berlin Olympics. His journey, which is fraught with obstacles both on and off the race track, is narrated in an emotionally rich manner that pays homage to this extraordinary figure and his inspiring life. Owens' story is a testament to the strength of his character, his inherent gift for athletics, and the societal changes he helped bring about by not bowing down to the pressures of prejudice, discrimination, and hate.

Stephan James beautifully embodies Owens' character, delivering an engaging and dynamic performance that mirrors the athlete's grace, courage, and determination. Eli Goree appears in a supporting role, providing an adequate mirror to Owens' life and struggles. The charisma and chemistry among the cast significantly contribute to bringing the story alive with intensity and emotional resonance.

Jason Sudeikis gives a career-pivoting performance in his role as Larry Snyder, Owens' dedicated and hard-driving coach from the Ohio State University. Sudeikis brilliantly portrays Snyder - a man with his own set of demons, who finds a sense of purpose in training Owens and fights fiercely for his student’s place on the American Olympic team. His bond with Owens deepens as they navigate the turbulent waters of international athletics and global politics. The dynamic between Owens and Snyder contributes significantly to the multi-dimensional aspect of the movie.

"Race" is not just about Owens' athletic journey but also serves as a touching commentary on the socio-political climate of the 1930s. Taking place against the backdrop of the U.S. grappling with the Great Depression and the rise of Nazi influence in Germany, the narrative balances the depiction of Owens' personal battles with larger global issues, creating a captivating combination of sports drama and historical insight.

While the movie places focus on Owens' experiences during the Berlin Olympics, it also takes time to emphasize his struggle back home in a racially divided United States, where despite his growing fame and triumphs, he was never truly accepted due to the color of his skin. This harsh reality is delivered with the same level of seriousness and respect as the athletic accolades he obtained.

The production elements of the movie help bring the era to life. Carefully considered costumes, eloquent set designs, and meticulous attention to detail create an authentic feel of the 1930s. "Race" boasts impressive cinematography that goes beyond standard sports movie visuals. The camera work during the athletic sequences, especially the racing ones, brilliantly capture the thrill, suspense, and raw emotion that define such moments, making viewers feel as if they are present in the stadium, witnessing the events unfold.

Despite being intrinsically based on sports and history, "Race" transcends the boundaries of being just another sports drama. It is a profound exploration of courage, persistence, and the transformative power of sports. The film succeeds in dramatizing Owens' incredible life and the critical historical period in which he lived. "Race" ensures viewers will leave not only with a greater understanding and appreciation for Jesse Owens and his sporting achievements but also a deeper insight into the man he was off the track.

In conclusion, "Race" is a well-crafted, vibrant, and inspiring biopic that showcases the power of sports as a tool for social change, based on a real-life hero whose impact went far beyond the confines of an Olympic stadium. With its in-depth narrative, strong character portrayals, and captivating visuals, “Race” offers viewers a rousing cinematic experience.

Race is a Drama, History movie released in 2016. It has a runtime of 134 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 7.1. It also holds a MetaScore of 56.

How to Watch Race

Where can I stream Race movie online? Race is available to watch and stream, buy on demand, download at Amazon Prime, Netflix, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD, Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Race for a limited time or purchase the movie for downloading.

Stephen Hopkins
Stephan James, Jason Sudeikis, Jeremy Irons, William Hurt
Also starring Stephan James
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