Director Leni Riefenstahl shot this two-part film at Berlin's 1936 Olympic Games. Unlike the director's controversial Nazi propaganda films, there is little overt political content in this epic: if anything, the film's hero is African-American athlete Jesse Owens, whose remarkable feats challenged Adolf Hitler's boasts of Aryan superiority. Riefenstahl combines thrilling in-the-moment sports footage with scenes of classical beauty comparing modern Olympians to Greek heroes.
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