The Ringer

Rated PG-13 100 minutes 2005

Desperate for money to help a friend, and hoping to call in a favor from his compulsive-gambler uncle Gary (Brian Cox), office drone Steve (Johnny Knoxville) finds that his uncle is woefully in debt to a loan shark who has a soft spot for the Special Olympics -- especially the reigning champion, Jimmy (Leonard Flowers), "the Deion Sanders of retards." So Gary ropes Steve into a plan that'll pay both their debts -- bet against Jimmy and have Steve, a former amateur track champion, enter the contest pretending to be mentally handicapped. Steve's fellow athletes quickly see through the ruse, and while initially hostile, they decide to help him win because they all hate the arrogant Jimmy. Knoxville isn't a great leading man, but the actors and athletes who play his Olympian friends (especially Jed Rees) are hilarious, and most viewers would be surprised to learn which ones are "challenged" in real life and which are not.

Film Credits

Official Site: www.foxsearchlight.com/theringer

Director: Barry W. Blaustein

Writer: Ricky Blitt

Producer: John L. Jacobs and Bradley Thomas

Cast: Johnny Knoxville, W. Earl Brown, Brian Cox, Katherine Heigl, Jed Rees, Bill Chott, John Taylor, Zen Gesner and Leonard Earl Howze

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