Parents' Guide to


By S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Boxing docu glorifies Pacquiao but skims the surface.

Movie PG-13 2015 88 minutes
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Manny Pacquiao deserves to have a good movie made about his life, but Manny isn't quite it. The early sections are fascinating, including rare clips of his early career and an interview with the uncle who first trained him and has kept the gloves Pacquiao wore when he was 12. The midsection is fairly standard rise-to-fame fare, explaining how a nobody boxer became a sensation with an upset win over the reigning world champion.

The rest is, unfortunately, a muddle. There are hints of financial shenanigans within Pacquiao's management that aren't further explored; storylines lead to nowhere, and, although there are interviews with his wife and brief mentions of girlfriends, there's almost no information about Pacquiao's personal life. We briefly see him with kids, but we're not even told their age or gender -- or even how many kids he has. Is he a devoted husband or a philanderer? After watching Manny, we have no idea. The later portions that deal with his professional life also lack focus. Several matches against Juan Marquez are shown, but their significance isn't explained. Yes, Pacquiao's defeat of Oscar De La Hoya was impressive, but why was it a watershed moment in boxing? Manny is a film about Manny, but he remains a mystery.

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