Grade • A-
DVD • "The Trials of Muhammad Ali" not only serves as a much-needed history lesson, it gives us a look at the man who is now a legend.
The narrative of this excellent documentary follows Ali's rise to the top of the boxing world at a time when boxing mattered to millions of Americans. More important, it follows his transition from Cassius Clay to Muhammad Ali, his membership in the Black Muslims and his battle with the United States government over his claim on conscientious objector status and his refusal to go fight in the Vietnam War. Or even serve as a recruiting poster boy far from the fighting.