Kings of the Olympics (1948)

Genres - Sports & Recreation  |   Sub-Genres - Sports  |   Run Time - 60 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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Most of this 60-minute documentary is culled from Olympia, Leni Reifenstahl's classic filmed record of the 1936 Berlin Olympics. This being an American film, the emphasis is on the participating American athletes, notably track & field greats Jesse Owens, Ralph Metcalfe, Earle Meadows and Ken Carpenter. Perhaps understandably, the material has been reassembled to cast the recently defeated Nazis in as unflattering a light as possible (in the original film, Riefenstahl treated the contestants with impartiality and equanimity -- much to the dismay of German propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels). Even when one is aware of the outcome, the various athletic events arouse a modicum of suspense. The new narration is spoken by radio commentator Bill Slater.