Pride (2007 film)

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Pride ver2.jpg
One-sheet theatrical poster for Pride
Directed by Sunu Gonera
Produced by Brett Forbes
Paul Hall
Patrick Rizzotti
Adam Rosenfelt
John Sacchi
Terrence Howard
Screenplay by Kevin Michael Smith
Michael Gozzard
J. Mills Goodloe
Story by Kevin Michael Smith
Michael Gozzard
Starring Terrence Howard
Bernie Mac
Gary Sturgis
Tom Arnold
Kimberly Elise
Music by Aaron Zigman
Cinematography Matthew F. Leonetti
Edited by Billy Fox
Element Films
Fortress Features
LIFT Productions
Paul Hall Productions
Distributed by Lionsgate
Release date
  • March 23, 2007 (2007-03-23)
Running time
104 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Box office $7 million[1]

Pride is a 2007 American biopic drama feature film released by Lionsgate Entertainment on March 23, 2007. Loosely based upon the true story of Philadelphia swim coach James "Jim" Ellis, Pride stars Terrence Howard, Bernie Mac, and Kimberly Elise. The film was directed by Sunu Gonera.

The film centers on Jim Ellis (Terrence Howard) and grouchy but caring janitor Elston (Bernie Mac). The two have a short-lived rivalry before becoming good friends.


It is 1974 and life is not easy for a black male to find employment, even college-educated Jim Ellis (Terrence Howard). While struggling to find anything better, Jim, a former competitive swimmer, is working on the decrepit Marcus Foster Recreation Center operated by the Philadelphia Department of Recreation. The center includes a dilapidated swimming pool, which Ellis rehabilitates. Ellis's presence and activities cause friction with a bitter, overprotective janitor named Elston (Bernie Mac). One day, Jim invites a group of black teens who have just been thrown off the basketball court in the Center's yard in for a swim. Andre (Kevin Phillips), Hakim (Nate Parker), Reggie (Evan Ross), Puddin’ Head (Brandon Fobbs), and Walt (Alphonso McAuley) prove to be fairly capable swimmers and with a few pointers, could become great swimmers. With some help from Elston, Jim decides to try to save the swimming pool by starting the city's first all African-American swim team, the P.D.R. team (Pride, Determination, Resilience). When the team acquires Willie (Regine Nehy), a female swimmer more talented than any of the boys, the prospects of competing against much more experienced white teams begin to improve. Jim also develops a romantic interest in a beautiful city councilor (Kimberly Elise), Hakim's sister and guardian. Throughout their struggles in and out of the swimming pool, Jim and Elston encourage and mentor the kids, helping them not only to become successful at swimming but also in their struggles against prejudice, crime, and poverty.



Critical response[edit]

Pride was met with positive reviews from critics, with a 75% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 108 reviews.[2] The film, however, scored a 72% approval rating from audience members.[3] The New York Times critic Matt Zoller Seitz noted that the movie "illustrates the adaptability and limitations of the sports movie," but concluded that when the film's idealists glide through the water amidst the tunes of the time, "the heart still leaps."[4] Comedian Bill Burr spoofed and criticized the film as an example of overindulgence in white-on-black racism in movies with increasingly obsolete topics.[5]


List of awards and nominations
Award Date Category Recipient(s) Result
ESPY Awards 2008 Best Sports Movie Nominated
Image Awards 2008 Outstanding Performance In a Motion Picture Terrence Howard Nominated
MovieGuide Awards 2008 Best Film For Mature Audiences Michael Gozzard Won
Rome Film Fest 2008 Consiglio dei Bambini Prize Suna Gonera Won


  1. ^ "Pride (2007)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved July 11, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Pride". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved July 11, 2011. 
  3. ^  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  4. ^ "Making Waves in a Tough Community". 
  5. ^ Video on YouTube

External links[edit]