Requiem for a Heavyweight Reviews
Cassius Clay cameo as himself.
Opening fight zequence gives the viewer a sense of what the fighter experiences after taking a beating.
Exterior and interior locations for Jack Dempsey restaurant who also had a cameo. Cameos by Arthur Mercante, Willie Pep and Gus Leznevich in opening scene listening to the fight.
Quinn's makeup to highlight his facial scars.
Excellent screenplay dialogue by Rod Serling ada pted from his teleplay.
Great cinematography and direction. Shot in black & white, the use of shadows and light is superb.
Brilliant character development and depth. It is painful to watch Mountain Rivera go through all his torment, stumbling along with no direction, easily manipulated.
What makes it so much much more compelling is Anthony Quinn's performance in the lead role. Surely one of the great performances in cinema history (yet strangely overlooked, as was anything to do with this movie, at Oscar nomination time). Quinn acts out of his skin here, engaging you fully, and making you feel his pain and desperation.
Good support from Mickey Rooney, Jackie Gleason and Julie Harris. Cassius Clay (later known as Muhammad Ali) and Jack Dempsey appear as themselves.
Only negative comes right at the end. Conclusion feels rushed, and slightly misses its mark.
One of the greatest sporting movies ever made. Among boxing movies its only equals or betters are Raging Bull and Million Dollar Baby.