A former Iraqi boxing champion reflects on his journey to pursue the American dream.
Estaifan Shilaita drives a cab in Chicago. But once upon a time, he was a boxing champion in Iraq. Still, despite his success in the ring, his Christian faith prevented him from representing his country on an international stage.
Facing persecution for his religion, Shilaita fled Iraq in 1976 for Greece to pursue his boxing dream. With his family’s blessing, he left behind four brothers, four sisters and his parents. Ultimately, he immigrated to the U.S. in 1979 for “a better life and religious freedom.”
This fascinating documentary traces the turns and twists that he took from Iraq to the U.S., where he arrived to be with the woman he loved. Well-paced and sharply photographed, it’s also the portrait of a likable, engaging man who has created an equally warm and appreciative family around himself, beginning with his wife.
Shot over the course of several years, “The Champion” has an authentic emotional heart, resulting in a warm, genuine film with an eternal message about the primacy and power of family.
“I tell my kids, this is the land of the opportunity to be anything you want,” Shilaita added. “Everyday I’m blessed. I say to my family, ‘God bless America.'”
A devoted husband suspects his wife is cheating on him. Then he hides under the bed.
A burn-survivor goes on his first date after his accident.
A man uncovers the horrifying truth of what landed on his childhood farm.
By Stefanie Abel Horowitz |
A woman thinks about dying. But a co-worker asks her out.
A virgin tries to get laid before an unstoppable asteroid ends the world.
By David M. Helman |
A young father who is cut off from his son takes matters into his own hands.
By Kaveh Mazaheri |
An Iranian woman's husband has an accident at home... and she just watches him die.
An elderly man is given the opportunity to relive one day of his life.
By Andrew Goldsmith and Bradley Slabe |
A crochet dinosaur must unravel itself to save the love of its life.
2 strangers at a wedding reception make an unexpected connection.
A man in a time-loop must work with his brother to prevent a catastrophic fire.
A young woman wakes up in a strange place, with a strange guy.
A couple's sex life is in a slump, forcing them to reconsider the relationship.
A young man works in a food truck, across from a brothel with a girl who needs his help.
By Dane Clark and Linsey Stewart |
A young woman finds a one-night stand. But he lives 2 hours away via public transit.