It’s irrefutable that the movies have had a long love affair with the sport of boxing. Manny – a documentary about the Filipino professional boxer Manny Pacquiao – is part of that legacy.
The traditions of the boxing film are well-known to Leon Gast, the director of the Oscar-winner When We Were Kings, who co-directed this film with Ryan Moore, a first-time director who conceived the project. This particular documentary relates the somewhat overfamiliar tale about the young fighter who boxes his way out of poverty. It helps that Pacquiao is such a charismatic figure.
Pound for pound, Pacquiao, who has fought in several different weight classes, is one of the best-ranked champions of our time. Born into extreme poverty, he used his skills to overcome bleak odds. His Cinderella story continues to inspire the Filipino people, and has led to side careers in singing and film acting, as well as celebrity endorsements. More impressively, Pacquiao was re-elected last year to a second term as a congressman in the Filipino House of Representatives. He is currently preparing for a contentious rematch next month – which may require an addendum to this movie which already tracks the boxer over the course of several years.
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