Great White Hype , The

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -2 1/2

When flamboyant boxing promoter, Reverend Fred Sultan (Samuel Jackson), sees his Las Vegas fights' ticket sales dwindling, he's ready for some drastic changes. His champion fighter, the Grim Reaper (Damon Wayans) needs a white opponent to draw the crowds. Meanwhile, reporter Kane (Jeff Goldblum) calls boxing a carnival of carnage and plans to expose the turbaned fraud who looks more like an Arabian prince than a preacher. Sultan recruits a former amateur fighter, Terry Conklin (Peter Berg), now a rock singer and druggie in Cleveland. Terry is brought to Vegas as the Grim Reaper's white contender. The great white hype begins as Sultan convinces Kane to become his public relations person. Terry becomes an overnight sex symbol who basks in the limelight while his opponent watches TV, eats ice cream and smokes, confident Terry can't beat him. But it doesn't really matter because all the hype has generated over $100 million in advance ticket sales. The whole cast is obviously having fun making fun of the characters they play. Too bad the audience isn't.

The Grim Reaper refuses to cave in to all the hoop-la even though it turns the public against him. Terry appears to be stoned or dull-witted as he extols Buddhism and promises to use the money to stop homelessness while beautiful women climb all over him. But a reporter discovers it's the black fighter who has given huge sums to charity. All the while, viewers are subjected to disgusting dialogue, including 63 obscenities and offensive references to bizarre sex acts. Terry allows women to fondle him in public on two occasions, once during a press conference. The Grim Reaper gets his thrills watching a porno video before the big fight. Sultan manipulates his followers like a master puppeteer, proving everyone can be bought. Some of the fight scenes are brutal as the boxers hammer away at each other unmercifully. THE GREAT WHITE HYPE's humor is crude and ridicules religion, and the dialogue is repulsive.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
20th Century Fox, P.O. Box 900, Beverly Hills, CA 90213

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Many (28) times - Mild 4, Moderate 24

Obscene Language: Many (63) times - F-word 37, s-word 22, other 4

Profanity: Few (4) times - Regular 1, Exclamatory 3

Violence: Several times - Moderate (severe blows to head and face in boxing ring, other fighting with hits to stomach, gun threats)

Sex: None, but implied in video

Nudity: None; Near nudity - several times (low-neck dresses, scantily clad showgirls, girl in porno video in see-through negligee)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Few times (prostitute caressing man, open-mouth kissing)

Drugs: Cigar smoking, drinking many times, man appears to be stoned on drugs

Other: Fighter claims to be peace-loving Buddhist; Christian religion ridiculed

Running Time:
Intended Audience: Adults

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