King Richard Review
What’s It About?
The drive and determination of one man to se his daughters overcome adversity in many forms to become the best tennis players in the world.
Who’s In It?
Will Smith (Men In Black, Bad Boys, Ali & more recently Aladdin)
Aujanue Ellis (The Help, If Beale Street Could Talk & more recently Designated Survivor
Other notables include:
Jon Bernthal (The Walking Dead, The Wolf Of Wall Street, Le Mans ’66 & more recently The Many Saints Of Newark)
Saniyya Sidney (Hidden Figures, Fences & more recently The Passage)
Director: Reinaldo Marcus Green (Monsters And Men, Top Boy & Good Joe Bell)
On the face of it, a biopic about Serena & Venus Williams’ father, with Will Smith in the lead role might not seem that tempting. Potentially saccharine sweet and one note, with an A-list star who has not had a hit film in a while, King Richard is actually a hugely powerful drama avoiding all the cliches, with Smith delivering his best performance in years and potentially offering up an award-worthy turn.
While it is not necessarily a warts-and-all portrayal of their domineering father, King Richard is certainly not the most flattering either. The main focus of the film is on Richard Williams’ drive, determination and uncompromising attitude to developing two of his daughters into the best in their field - tennis – despite the many obstacles including race and finance standing in their way.
Always watchable and immensely likeable, his recent films have had a fairly muted response, but in King Richard, Will Smith imbues his character with a great depth of emotion despite limited physical effects. He is given strong support from Aujanue Ellis, Sidney & Demi Singleton, as well as Jon Bernthal, but this tennis biopic is without doubt Smith’s film, and he’s ace.
In A Nutshell:
Will Smith gives a powerhouse and award-worthy performance in this remarkable drama about the resilience and strength of character of one man.
Will Smith’s remarkable performance
The visual beauty of the film, which look incredible thanks to cinematographer Robert Elswit.
Despite not being overly flattering, this biopic may not be the most objective.
Certificate: 12 / 12A