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The Express [Blu-ray] (2008)

Dennis Quaid , Rob Brown , Gary Fleder  |  PG |  Blu-ray
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (106 customer reviews)

List Price: $14.98
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The Express  [Blu-ray] + Glory Road [Blu-ray] + We Are Marshall [Blu-ray]
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Product Details

  • Actors: Dennis Quaid, Rob Brown, Omar Benson Miller, Aunjanue Ellis, Clancy Brown
  • Directors: Gary Fleder
  • Writers: Charles Leavitt
  • Producers: John Davis
  • Format: AC-3, Blu-ray, Color, Dolby, DTS Surround Sound, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1), Spanish (DTS 5.1)
  • Subtitles: French, Spanish
  • Dubbed: Spanish
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Universal Studios
  • DVD Release Date: January 20, 2009
  • Run Time: 130 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (106 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #71,766 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Express [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Based on the real-life story of college football hero Ernie Davis, The Express will remind some moviegoers of the heart-tugging Brian's Song. Ernie Davis was a star athlete at Syracuse University and the first African American to win the Heisman Trophy. Unlike other winners of that era, he wasn't allowed to attend his banquet dinner because the venue didn't serve blacks. He died of leukemia at the age of 23 in 1963. That element of his story is well known to football fans. What the filmmakers concentrate on in The Express isn't just Davis' athletic prowess, but the relationship he had with his coach Ben Schwartzwalder (Dennis Quaid). Rob Brown (Stop-Loss, Coach Carter) lends both gravity and charm to the role of Davis. He plays Davis as a strong willed and moral young man who refuses to let racism and discrimination dominate his life. He joins a Jewish fraternity, gets along with his predominantly white teammates and shows respect for his family and coach. The film is wise not to present Schwartzwalder as wholly color blind. Though not overtly racist, he makes a few references that would not be acceptable in modern-day society. Overall though, the coach doesn't care what color his players are, as long as they share the common goal of winning. Quaid is well cast in the role, adding just the right amount of gruff mannerisms without becoming a caricature. Brown has the difficult task of adding suspense to a character where most of the audience already knows his fate. Still, he manages to keep moviegoers on their toes--hoping for a miracle that we know will never come. --Jae-Ha Kim

Product Description

Witness the inspirational true story of a real American hero! Rising from the humblest of beginnings, Ernie Davis (Rob Brown) overcame impossible odds to become the first African-American to win college football’s greatest honor – the Heisman Trophy. Starring Dennis Quaid as the hard-nosed coach that helped drive him to greatness, The Express is a powerful story of triumph on and off the field that will have you cheering again and again!

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great film January 8, 2009
There has been well-documented commentary about the producers of The Express having taken liberties with some of the facts. While this is true, none of those liberties really obscure or confuse the Ernie Davis story. If you want to see a more factual presentation of the Ernie Davis story, check out the 30-minute documentary about Davis in ESPN's SportCentury series. It is very well done, too. You'll find that in this feature film, there is not much significant straying from fact.

This was an excellent film. In the theater where I saw the film, the audience was so into the movie, particularly the football action, that some folks actually cheered when Davis would make a good run or score a touchdown. The director and actors did a great job of hooking the viewer into the intensity of the games. Great story without getting too hung up on the national politics of the time. Highly recommended.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AN INSPIRING, BUT SAD BIOGRAPHY! WELL DONE! August 21, 2009
Being a football fan I am ashamed to say I didn't know this story before seeing the film. I did have some knowledge of this tragedy, but I didn't know the full story. This is a gripping biography about a young man who never got the chance to reap the rewards for his hard work and perseverance through a time when this county didn't see blacks as people. It's hard to believe this was only 60 years ago! It's really appalling how we treated certain people in those days and it's only been in the last 20 years when we have even begun to put this practice in the garbage where it belongs.

The film follows the life of football running back Ernie Davis who has such an inspiring, but ultimately sad story of how he overcame many hard ships to become an incredible running back and model sportsman. The film has a great balance of football heroics and compelling drama and should keep any movie fan interested during its two hour running time.

Excellent performances and realistic action make this a winner from start to finish! I would love to see a film about Barry Sanders that was handled this well. Although Sander's story isn't nearly this sad, it's really one that should be told, you don't have to win the Superbowl to be a winner!.....Hollywood are you listening?
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
The Express is the story of Syracuse running back Ernie Davis. Davis followed the great Jim Brown and played for Syracuse in the late 1950s. Davis might have been even better that Jim Brown. Davis led his team to a national championship and became the first African American to win the Heisman Trophy.

This is a another feel-good racism sports movie along the lines of Meet the Titans or Glory Road. I say "feel-good" because the harsh realities of American racism in the late 1950s are explored and covered, but racism's true graphic and intense nature is never displayed.

Ernie Davis was always an optimistic man. He was one of a few minorities on campus and on the team, yet he was always kind to everyone. This movie made even better because most people haven't heard of Davis. He died tragically at the age of 23 from lukemia. He is truly a man that deserves to be honored in a movie like this.

The football scenes are top notch. Dennis Quaid is great as the Orangemen coach. The period settings really capture the feel of the time this movie was based in. On a downside, after watching the film, I still don't feel I know who Ernie Davis was, other than a man who battled racism. I wish the movie could have explored his personal life more.

I'm only 36 and thankful I've grown up in a time and location where racism has not been a part of my life. This movie pays homage to a man who broke the color barrier when it wasn't easy and made it possible for a man who is also African American to become president of the United States.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A mediocre film of an inspirational story March 26, 2012
By xc
Gary Fleder's "The Express" just adds to the ever-increasing list of sports movies centred around a hero overcoming adversary. The producers successfully managed to combine the true story of athletic achievement and overcoming racism to create a melodramatic movie that we've all seen before.

Although "The Express" doesn't stand out and is entirely predictable, it definitely appeals to the masses. Ernie Davis played by Rob Brown, is shown as a promising football player while growing up who goes on to play for Syracuse University and eventually gets drafted by the Cleveland Browns. During his time at Syracuse, Davis leads his team to win the school's first national football championship and becomes the first African American to win the Heisman Trophy.

All of the actors portrayed their characters as likeable and charismatic although almost all of their roles can be found in every other dramatic sport film. Ernie's white teammates are rude and intolerant of Ernie and start a number of locker room fights while Dennis Quaid's character is the harsh coach with a good heart who sticks with Davis until the very end. Although the numerous shots of football games along with fast paced music keep the audience's attention, the storyline is extremely predictable and difficult to get invested in.

"The Express" has excellent cinematography with plenty of scenes of the real football games that Ernie Davis was playing in along with re-enacted footage that will leave you gaping at the screen. However, cinematography can only go so far in telling the story and what the director, Gary Fleder, excelled at in the technicalities of filming, he fell short at with portraying Ernie Davis' story in a way that moved viewers.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie
I love this movie it's one of the best movies ever. My item came on time and I think it is a must see movie
Published 24 days ago by Nick
4.0 out of 5 stars Goodness
Good movie for any sports fan who also like watching movie with racial tensions like rember the titans or coach carter I think lol
Published 1 month ago by joshua
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth watching
It's a great story & a testament to the powerful influence of family & perseverance. There is language mostly in the confrontational scenes so I would be mindful with respect to... Read more
Published 1 month ago by dannygirl
5.0 out of 5 stars Haven't watched the movie yet..
Time hasn't been there to watched movie, its a well add to my collect of movies and theme base on real life events
Published 1 month ago by Carrie Lynn Snyder Renfro
5.0 out of 5 stars a must- see
Incredible movie! Great message- highly recommend it! I show it to my 8th grade students each year and they love it!
Published 2 months ago by Elizabeth
5.0 out of 5 stars Great recap of Ernie Davis' short career
I'm from Syracuse and frequently attend Su games, so I guess there was no question of liking this one. Historically mostly correct
Published 2 months ago by Matthew B. Sweeney
5.0 out of 5 stars Good movie for high school students
First black Heisman Trophy winner - difficult viewing on some levels, due to historical facts. But Ernie is a example of being the bigger man, even where his coach is concerned. Read more
Published 2 months ago by simlin
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie.
Great movie based on a true story. I saw it on cable tv and had to have it in my collection. Would highly recommend.
Published 2 months ago by Christine Ruffin
4.0 out of 5 stars Football makes every movie better
Very inspirational. Fantastic movie for movie for people are also football people, I definitely recommend this movie to them and even regular folks
Published 3 months ago by Reuven Shuck
5.0 out of 5 stars Courage and football...excellent combination
Take a young African American man out of his familiar surroundings but allow him to maintain his persona. That's this film. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Cali Book Worm
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