Against the Ropes (2004)



Critic Consensus: A bland, dumbed-down package of sports cliches.

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Movie Info

Charles S. Dutton's feature-length directorial debut Against the Ropes is based on the real-life story of Jackie Kallen, a Jewish woman from Detroit who became a successful boxing manager. Played by Meg Ryan, Kallen works her way up in the world of boxing by believing in the fighting skills of Luther Shaw (Omar Epps). Director Dutton appears as veteran trainer Felix Reynolds, whom Kallen encourages to come out of retirement.
PG-13 (adult situations)
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Meg Ryan
as Jackie Kallen
Omar Epps
as Luther Shaw
Tony Shalhoub
as LaRocca
Charles S. Dutton
as Felix Reynolds
Tory Kittles
as Devon Green
Tim Daly
as Gavin
Jason Jones
as Ticket Guy
Dov Tiefenbach
as Organic Clerk
Skye McCole Bartusiak
as Little Jackie
Holt McCallany
as Dorsett
Neil Crone
as HBO Commentator
Rogue Johnston
as Montage Opponent
Dean McDermott
as Pete Kallen
Beau Starr
as Corcoran
Michael Rhoades
as Mathias' Manager
Juan Carlos Hernández
as Pedro Hernandez
Nick Alachiotis
as Luther's Trainer
Karen Robinson
as Kimberly Insurance
Shawn Lawrence
as Philadelphia Fight Official
Arnold Pinnock
as Heavyweight
Merwin Mondesir
as Street Crony
Noah Danby
as LaRocca's Henchman
Gene Mack
as Kevin Keyes
Doug Lennox
as Barrel-Chested Man
Reg Dreger
as Lonnie
Michael Dion
as DJ at Strip Club
Diego Fuentes
as Car Attendant
Ray Marsh
as Final Fight Referee
Joel Harris
as Mathias
Michael Amos
as Montage Opponent
Arturo Fresolone
as Hernandez' Manager
Michael Buffer
as Ring Announcer
Jean Daigle
as Montage Promoter
Jeff Ironi
as Security Guard
Sean Bell
as Ray Kallen
Tamara Hickey
as Megan the Reporter
Bruce Gooch
as Pawn Shop Clerk
Hector Perez
as Hernandez' Sparring Partner
Jackie Kallen
as Female Reporter
Donovan Boucher
as Montage Opponent
Egerton Marcus
as Hopeful Fighter
Moses Nyarko
as Mouketendi
Eric Reynolds
as Hopeful Fighter
Julian Scott Urena
as Ray Kallen's Sparring Partner
Mike Kraft
as Jacobs
Edwin DeLeon
as Montage Opponent
Tracey Waterhouse
as LaRocca's Receptionist
Peter Wylie
as Miami Referee
Hayley Verlyn
as Beauty With LaRocca
Jared Durand
as Young Crisco
Dave Dunbar
as Philadelphia Referee
James Jardine
as Ring Announcer
Adrian Devine
as Crisco
Nevin Pajkic
as Heavyweight
John Christopher Terry
as USA Today Reporter
Rocky Zolnierczyk
as Sands Fight Referee
Carlos Varela Jr.
as Hernandez' Trainer
Remo DiCarlo
as Buffalo Opponent
Everton McEwan
as Luther's Sparring Partner
Syd Vanderpool
as Luther's Tampa Opponent
Suchart Yidkerepauprai
as Rugged Boxer
Paul Lawrie
as Montage Opponent
Martin Van Zanten
as Montage Opponent
Chad Keens-Douglas
as Montage Opponent
Anthony Ferri
as Montage Opponent
Joseph Richardson
as Montage Opponent
Everol Carty
as Montage Opponent
Derek Bujalski
as Montage Opponent
Alwin Mascoll
as Interviewed Boxer
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Critic Reviews for Against the Ropes

All Critics (132) | Top Critics (36)

A miscast Ryan struggles with a Detroit accent and a script that goes nowhere.

February 26, 2004
Rolling Stone
Top Critic

What could have been a Working Girl hoot gets mired in redundant assertions of Kallen's feistiness.

Full Review… | February 24, 2004
Village Voice
Top Critic

Somewhere along the way, I found myself enjoying Against the Ropes, not in spite of my better judgment, but because something in the movie defies the whole notion of better judgment altogether.

Full Review… | February 20, 2004
Top Critic

So anemic you should probably order iron supplements with your popcorn, its plot so predictable it makes falling dominoes seem like a white-knuckle thrill ride.

February 20, 2004
Washington Post
Top Critic

A boilerplate melodrama whose good guys and bad guys are so baldly drawn they could have been conceived by Friz Freleng.

February 20, 2004
Washington Post
Top Critic

Bathos wrapped in a formulaic screenplay bolstered with cliches, not only about the boxing world but about tough women and the men who hate them.

Full Review… | February 20, 2004
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Against the Ropes


quite a hated movie! although it isnt original its not a terrible movie and is quite a good movie, it kept me entertained and interested in the movie and i thought it was pretty interesting. I enjoyed the story and its based on real events as well and i enjoyed the acting and writting of the script i think the movie showed how men are predujice and sexist when a women does a supposed male job that no women should do, and i think it projected that across brilliantly i really enjoyed the movie. Meg Ryan is brilliant and so is omar epps i love tony shalhoub in this hes brilliant as the horrible trainer businessman. Meg Ryan pays a women whose bossed about and finally gets the chances to take on a fighter for boxing but she takes a risk with an unsuspeciting surprise that turns to be a huge bonus, but will the fame get to her and will she continue to have the fighters best interests at heart? Funny in places and keeps you entertained and a real good emotional journey through the life of a women who gets everything good movie!

Film Crazy
Film Crazy

Super Reviewer


Arash Xak
Arash Xak

Super Reviewer


Interesting. Not original but it was okay.

Sunil Jawahir
Sunil Jawahir

Super Reviewer

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