Split Decisions


Action / Drama / Sport

Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 26%
IMDb Rating 5.2 10 957

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Uploaded By: FREEMAN



Jennifer Beals as Barbara Uribe
James Tolkan as Benny Pistone
Julius Harris as Tony Leone
Tom Bower as Detective Walsh

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by bkoganbing 6 / 10

The Fighting McGuinns

I'm really amazed at some of the reviews I've read on this film. It's not the greatest boxing film ever made, still it portrays both the good and the seamier side of the sport. It's a low level Rocky with a touch of an old James Cagney-Pat O'Brien film, The Irish In Us.

The idea that even a top amateur can step into the ring with a ranked professional contender in his division and beat him is nonsense. What The Irish In Us had was James Cagney as the MANAGER stepping into the ring when his fighter is injured and beating the welterweight champion for the title. Next to that Split Decisions is positively realistic.

What's nice here is the relationship of the three generations of boxers in the McGuinn family. Grandfather John McLiam, Father Gene Hackman, and sons Craig Sheffer and Jeff Fahey. When Fahey stands up to mobster James Tolkan and refuses to throw a fight to his boy Eddie Velez, he's worked over and then accidentally killed. Sheffer steps in for his slain brother.

Though the McGuinns fight with each other a bit, they do stick together in a crisis. In its way Split Decisions is a boxing fantasy, much like the highly acclaimed Rocky. Not bad entertainment either.

This review is dedicated to McKennon Wimberly of the Professional Bull Riders who did some amateur boxing himself and shows the same heart riding bulls as Craig Sheffer did in this film.

Reviewed by merklekranz 6 / 10

Derivative small time boxing movie..........

Following a well worn cliché path, "Split Decisions" is far from original, nevertheless I found it entertaining. The three generations of Irish boxers seem to be in constant turmoil, but in the end stand together nicely. Gene Hackman is not the star here, even with top billing. It is Craig Sheffer and Jeff Fahey, as Hackman's sons, who carry the film. Jennifer Beals really has nothing to do, and is totally wasted. Character development is good, and the truncated boxing scenes are exciting............................. If you are willing to accept this revenge in the ring film for what it is, it is very watchable. - MERK

Reviewed by rsoonsa 3 / 10


Gene Hackman plays the part of Dan McGuinn, a prizefighter as his father was and as his sons are, in this ragged tale of a scrappy Irish family in New York City, pointedly devoid of female members. All of the McGuinns, including sons Ray (Jeff Fahey), a professional, and Eddie (Craig Sheffer), a Golden Gloves champion and future Olympic aspirant, have been living together although Ray has moved elsewhere as the action begins, and as he attempts to climb into the upper ranks of the middleweight division. To do this, he has signed a contract to be managed by a rival of his father in order to better advance his chances, which creates an emotional fence between father and son. Partially filmed in the Hell's Kitchen district of New York, the work deals largely with Ray's unintentional involvement with a mob-connected boxing figure and the impact this has upon the four McGuinns. Publicity for the film avers that the ring backgrounds of director David Drury (an amateur in the U.K.) and of stunt boss Paul Stader lend authenticity to the fight scenes; however, this is far from the case. In fact, there is an enormous problem with the boxing footage being widely separate from reality, the final bout being grotesquely silly. Additionally, the direction fails to generate a sense of tension and largely bypasses that which would make a viewer buy into the scenario: exploration of the conflict between the N.Y.P.D. officer father and his wayward older son. Technical aspects of the editing are handled with competence but widespread cutting haunts the piece, increasing incredulity, particularly when joined by a poorly composed and cliche-flooded script. Fahey gives a strong performance, and his scenes with only Sheffer are probably the film's best (as released); Hackman gives his all, as is his custom, and James Tolkan is quite effective as a well-outfitted principal villain, but Jennifer Beals is lacklustre at best and her part easily could have been eliminated. Camerawork by Tim Suhrstedt and Michael Hanan's production design are top-flight but can do little to improve a motion picture honeycombed with nullity

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