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Recommended age 10-18
138 minutes
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King Richard is a heart-warming bio-drama film about family and perseverance that will inspire the world! Director Reinaldo Marcus Green and Writer Zach Baylin deliver a great film about achieving the impossible when you don't give up. It's based on the true story about tennis superstars Venus and Serena Williams and how they rose to fame and the role their father played. Tennis fans are sure to love this, but anyone that loves inspirational films will appreciate it.

King Richard follows the journey of Richard Williams (Will Smith), the father and coach of famed tennis players Serena Williams (Demi Singleton) and Venus Williams (Saniyya Sydney). It shows how, even without having a background in the sport, poor equipment, outdated tennis courts, and limited financial resources, he was able to guide his daughters' careers and turn them into some of the best athletes in the history of tennis. Williams was an undeterred, driven father with a clear vision and plan to turn his girls into talented superstars using his own unusual methods.

The main characters are Richard Williams, Venus Williams, Serena Williams, Demi Singleton, Oracene 'Brandy' Williams (Aunjanue Ellis), Paul Cohen (Tony Goldwyn) and Rick Macci (Jon Bernthal). While this film is two hours long, you can't tell due to the amazing writing and the hilarious comedic delivery of two-time Oscar winner, Will Smith. You will experience many emotions while watching this film - pride, inspiration, sadness and happiness. My favorite part was watching the family support each other by making the best decisions for the overall family, whether it was getting mentors for Venus and Serena or just figuring out how to survive and strive in everyday life. The music is amazing and Beyonce's feature song "Be Alive" really sums up the journey the girls went through on their rise to the top.

The message throughout King Richard is to never give up and believe in yourself and your family, no matter your circumstances or background. The Williams' sisters came from a rough neighborhood and their family didn't have the money and resources needed to properly train them, but did not let that stop them from working hard and eventually dominating the world of tennis. Their father, Richard Williams, had a dream and a plan and he stuck to it. He also taught his family to dream big, despite any obstacles. Parents should be aware that there is mild violence.

I rate King Richard 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 8 to 18, plus adults. King Richard serves up in theaters November 19, 2021 and on HBO Max for 30 days after the theatrical release.

By Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

King Richard is one of the best movies of the year! The movie tells the incredible story of the childhood lives of two of the most famous female tennis players ever, Serena and Venus Williams. The acting is stupendous, and the portrayal of the Williams' story is extremely accurate. I love how there is so much subtle humor that keeps you laughing throughout the movie.

This storyline follows the lives of the Williams' family, specifically Serena (Demi Singleton), Venus (Saniyya Sidney) and their father, Richard's (Will Smith) journey to the top of the tennis world. You learn about their home life, their victories and their struggles.

I have a million reasons why I feel this is an incredible movie. The first amazing thing is the acting, which is so believable and so natural that I felt as if I was watching a high-quality documentary. While all the actors have very notable performances, one of the strongest performances is from Will Smith, who plays King Richard. His struggles are so visible as he gets his girls to the top after being rejected so many times. Other strong performances come from Saniyya Sidney (Venus Williams) and Demi Singleton (Serena Williams) because they both portray their character very accurately and you really feel their passion for tennis. Another terrific thing about the movie is its accuracy. Almost every detail stays true to the real lives of the Williams family - from the dialogue, to the outfits, to the sets and locations. One more thing that stands out is the cinematography, which is breathtaking. There are many exceptional camera shots that show varied points of view and add to the film's uniqueness.

The messages of the movie are that family is everything and you should always follow your passions. This movie will definitely inspire future tennis players, and other future athletes. There is some offensive language, mild violence and mention of drugs.

I give King Richard 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 11 to 18, plus adults. Tennis fans will most certainly love this. This movie releases in theaters and on HBO Max November 19, 2021.

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

King Richard, which tells the story of Venus and Serena Wiliams' father, is one of the most inspiring and powerful films to date. Especially so as it was created to portray the African-American experience in the United States and explore the possibility of overcoming a system created to oppress the excellence and hardworking efforts of Black Americans.

The two greatest world-renowned tennis players, Venus and Serena Williams, a sister act, were not made in a day. King Richard delves into the life and story of raising Serena (Demi Singleton) and Venus (Saniyya Sidney) through the perspective of their father, Richard Williams (Will Smith). This film creatively tells a story many thought they knew. But one particular aspect about this film that many don't know, and which director Reinaldo Marcus Green makes authentic, is the relationship between Richard Williams and Brandi Williams, husband and wife. It seems that little was held back in the telling of Mr. Williams' story. Will Smith's mannerisms, down to the accent, are almost a pure reflection of the real Richard Williams. Rick Macci (Jon Brenthal) though, as the coach, is my favorite character. The way that Jon Brental interacts with Will Smith and Saniyya Sidney on-screen creates one of the most hilarious scenes in the movie. Overall, the cinematic experience is wrapped up perfectly at the very end of the film with credits which includes a musical number called "Be Alive" by Beyonce, which creates a perfect ending to this film.

King Richard and his daughters teach the important lesson of the process to being great. It first starts with a dream. Then you must create a plan and stick with it through hard work and hustle. And when you get to the top, make sure to stay humble--a positive and uplifting message. You should know that there is profanity and violence throughout the film.

I give King Richard 5 out of 5 stars and I recommend it for ages 13 to 18, plus adults. You can watch King Richard in theatres and on HBO Max November 19, 2021.

By Ashleigh C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17

I really enjoyed King Richard and the story about a hard-working, dedicated father guiding his proficient, talented daughters through their journey on achieving their best. I really like seeing how Richard Williams (Will Smith) starts his girls, Venus (Saniyya) and Serena (Demi) practicing tennis at a young age and works hard to make sure everyone in his family is cared for and has a successful life. He had a vision and was determined to make that vision come true, which is admirable.

This film is based on the true story of Richard Williams (Will Smith), Venus Williams (Saniyya Sidney) and Serena Williams (Demi Singleton). In the film, Williams tells anyone who will listen to him that his daughters are born to be stars and that he has a plan to achieve that dream. He guides his daughters from working-class Compton, California, to become world tennis stars.

Directed by Reinaldo Marcus Green, the film is a compelling piece that captures both the internal and external landscape of this tennis-playing family from both California and Florida. The acting is phenomena, from Will Smith's portrayal of the father to Saniyya Aidney and Demi Singleton as Venus and Serena Williams and Aunjanue Ellis who plays their mother, Brandy. The camerawork is breathtaking, showing both the kindness and sacrifice of facing the battle of success on and off the tennis court. This is a must see in-the-theater movie to appreciate the grandeur of the cinematography and all this movie brings. Excellently written and motivationally driven, it delivers an array of positive messages regarding self-worth, courage, discipline, family, faith and humility.

The film's message is about believing in yourself and promotes the idea that hope is all you need to conquer anything. There are some parts that are frightening such as when a young man interrupts their practice to flirt with Venus. Richard asks him to stop disrespecting her and the guy punches Richard in the face.

I give King Richard 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. It releases in theaters and on HBO Max November 19, 2021.

By Rosabella P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

see youth comments
Armed with a clear vision and a brazen 78-page plan, Richard Williams is determined to write his daughters, Venus and Serena, into history. Training on Compton, California's neglected tennis courts--rain or shine--the girls are shaped by their father's unyielding commitment and their mother's balanced perspective and keen intuition, defying the seemingly insurmountable odds and prevailing expectations laid before them. Based on the true story that will inspire the world, "King Richard" follows the uplifting journey of a family whose unwavering resolve and unconditional belief ultimately delivers two of the world's greatest sports legends.
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