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GREAT DEBATERS, THE

What to know: Inspired by a true story, this film chronicles the journey of Professor Melvin Tolson, a brilliant but volatile debate team coach who uses the power of words to shape a group of underdog students from a small African American college in the deep south into a historically elite debate team.
GREAT DEBATERS, THE is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
Recommended age 12-18
123 minutes
DVD
GENIUS PRODUCTS
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GREAT DEBATERS, THE cover image
This inspiring film captures a time in history that is difficult to remember where racism was rampant in our country. Denzel proficiently tackles the story in a compelling fashion with high drama that at times makes you cringe, yet brings a smile to your face at the end. There are some graphic depictions of violence but they are paramount to telling the story and historically accurate.
Inspired by a true story, this film chronicles the journey of Professor Melvin Tolson, a brilliant but volatile debate team coach who uses the power of words to shape a group of underdog students from a small African American college in the deep south into a historically elite debate team. A controversial figure, Professor Tolson challenged the social mores of the time and was under constant fire for his unconventional and ferocious teaching methods as well as his radical political views. In their pursuit for excellence, Tolson's debate team receives a groundbreaking invitation to debate Harvard University's championship team. Directed by Denzel Washington; starring Denzel Washington, Forest Whitaker, Jurnee Smollett, Nate Parker, Denzel Whitaker, and Kimberly Elise. Written by Robert Eisele and Tom Epperson; Produced by Todd Black, Kate Forte, Oprah Winfrey and Joe Roth.
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