It’s hard to find anybody who doesn’t know something about Muhammad Ali, as the retired boxer still manages to keep a fairly high profile. Still, there’s a lot to learn about the man oft-considered the greatest boxer of all time. The Trials of Muhammad Ali captures many of the details of Ali’s life, but focuses intently on his refusal to be drafted and the subsequent conviction and five-year prison sentence he received for being a conscientious objector to the Vietnam War. He “was exemplifying a freedom most black people did not enjoy,” Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan says, indicating the symbol Ali had become. Despite governmental attempts, nothing deterred the athlete's belief, which only grew stronger over time.
The intense, award-winning film screens at 6 p.m. Thursday, March 20, at the Mesa Art Center, One East Main Street. Tickets are free but must be procured in advance. Call 480-644-6500 or visit www.mesaartscenter.com.