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Great Debaters was an excellent movie! Very informative

  • Jun 22, 2010
  • by
A valuable history lesson that underscores how far our nation has come since 1935. The film depicts the ugliness and viciousness of southern racism and the extreme poverty of the agrarian South during the Depression. It also shows how much African Americans valued education and yearned for equality. While the debaters from Wiley College were always seen arguing in favor of civil rights, they did so with eloquent and cogent arguments that serve well to educate today's viewers with an understanding of the philosophical underpinnings of the Civil Rights Movement. This film should be seen by as many people as possible now and shown in history classes in years to come.

This not only inspired people back in 1935, but still inpires today. It inspired me to have an open mind, keep pursueing my education and to appreciate what people have sacrificed for their heritages future! This movie motivates me to be a better person everyday, and realize what certain African Americans went thru to get respect in the new country.

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Quick Tip by . June 11, 2010
Awesome book and history, Good read.
review by . December 19, 2008
It is 1935, and at a small Negro college in Texas, Professor Tolson (Denzel Washington) is coaching the debate team. Its members include a sweet, pretty girl, a ladies' man, and a 14-year old whiz-kid. The students blossom under Tolson's leadership, but his extra-curricular activities may be a problem; at night he is secretly unionizing the share croppers, and the sheriff doesn't like it one bit.     I never expected a movie about a debate team to be intense, scary, or exhilarating, …
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About this movie


The Great Debaters is a 2007 American biopic period drama film directed by and starring two-time Academy Award winner Denzel Washington[1] and produced by Oprah Winfrey and her production companyHarpo Productions. It is based on an article written about theWiley College debate team by Tony Scherman for the 1997 Spring issue of American Legacy.[2].

The film co-stars Forest WhitakerKimberly EliseDenzel WashingtonNate ParkerDenzel WhitakerGina Ravera, and Jurnee Smollett. The screenplay was written by Robert Eisele. The film was released in theaters on December 25, 2007.[1]

The film was rated PG-13 for "depiction of strong thematic elements including violence and disturbing images, and for language and brief sexuality".


Based on a true story, the plot revolves around the efforts of debate coach Melvin B. Tolson (Denzel Washington) at historically black Wiley College to place his team on equal footing with whites in the American South during the 1930s, when Jim Crow laws were common and lynch mobs were a pervasive fear for blacks. In the movie, the Wiley team eventually succeeds to the point where they are able to debate Harvard University.

The movie also explores the social milieu of Texas during the Great Depression including not only the ...

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"Engrossing drama"
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