The Express

Synopsis: This biopic focuses on the relationship of Ernie Davis (1939-1963), a gifted African-American athlete, and his coach from 1958 to 1962 at Syracuse University, Ben Schwartzwalder (1909-1993). Schwartzwalder recruits Davis with the help of All-American running back, Jim Brown. The civil rights movement is gaining steam; Davis experiences prejudice on campus, in town, and on the field, sometimes from teammates. How he handles it and how he challenges Schwartzwalder to stand up for his players provide a counterpoint to several great seasons that lead first to a national championship and then to the Heismann Trophy.
Director(s): Gary Fleder
Production: Universal Pictures
  1 win & 3 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
130 min

five yards apart,

that's a football field.

But there are other lines,

ones you don't see,

that run deeper and wider,

all the way through a country,

and aren't part of any game.

Strong load right,

On one. On one.


- Break.

Whiskey, whiskey, 33.

Been waiting for this, spook.

I'm gonna kick your black

ass back to Africa, boy.

I found another Pepsi.

Pepsi Cola hits the spot...

- 12 full ounces, that's a lot

Twice as much

for a nickel, too

Twice as much

for a nickel, too

Pepsi Cola is

the drink for you

Pepsi Cola is

the drink for you

America has been riding...

the crest of a wave of

a peaceful prosperity.

I believe

in this world to come.

I think it's going to

be a pretty good one.

'When you say 'Budweiser,'

'you've said it all.'

- 'You've said it all.'

What are you boys doing

north of Union Street?

One of you better answer.

Just collecting bottles.

These are our

bottles up here.

Hey, guys.

Ain't but one

thing to do here.

Ernie, you listening to me?

Ernie, now.


Ernie. Ernie.

This one must be stupid.

I'll tell you what,

you give us those bottles...

and we won't

kick your black ass.

Got something to say?



Not only stupid,

but retarded.

And a n*gger,

how sad is that?

Look, you've got three

seconds to drop those bottles.




Get him.

- Get him.

Dear Mr. Martin, it feels...

strange to write

about my life.

I can't tell you

the exact moment

I knew what it was

I wanted to be...

or how I wanted

to make my mark.

Maybe it just felt

real good to run,

or maybe one day,

out of the corner of my eye.

I saw tacklers reaching out

for me and dropping behind.

Back in 1949, at the age of

I sure didn't want to be...

remembered for

running too slow.

People in town would always

ask, 'What you running from?'

Hey, Will.

I didn't know

then what I know now,

that I wasn't running from,

I was running to.

After dinner we gonna...

have an ice cream

eating contest.

What do you say about that?

Yeah, I like it.


First Corinthians 15:10.


Yes, Grandpa.

Why don't you read tonight?

You can do it.


'by the...'

Ernie, take a deep breath.

Okay, now try it again.

'But by the...

'grace of God I am what I am.

'And his grace...

'His grace...

'...which was bestowed...'

'...which was

bestowed upon me...

'was not in vain.'

'But I labored more

abundantly than they all,

'yet not I,

'but the grace of

God which was with me.'

The words, I know

they're in there...

but they don't come out

straight all the time.

That'll bring

Jackie Robinson up.

He's wearing a Brooklyn

Dodgers uniform.

He's Negro and he's playing

for the Brooklyn Dodgers?

That's right, boys.

That there is Jackie Robinson.

The windup and the delivery.

And the drive deep

into left field.

And it's a home run.

Jackie Robinson with a home

run, his 12th of the year,

and the crowd

roars at Ebbets Field.

Now what? You gonna

stare at it all night?

This here is a man

who's doing a lot...

without saying nothing.


- Hey, Ernie.




It's great to have you back.

So you still got that Chevy?

And what year is that?

It's a '39,

and you, too, Mama.

A '39 Chevy.

So, Marie, you have

some news for us?

Yes, sir. Mama, Daddy.

Ernie, I got married again.

To a very nice man.

The main thing is I can

support you now, baby.

I want you to come back

and live with me in Elmira.

How far away is Elmira?

It's not far at all, baby.

It's just a few hours away.

I think you'll like it.

You gonna love it, baby.

Bye, Will.

Bye, Ernie.

So, I'll see you soon.

Come on, boys.

Line up. Line up.

I got some new

jerseys here for you.

Wait till you see these.

Here you go,

Mike, Aaron, Nick.

Patrick, there's one for you.

You been waiting for

these, I know it.

Here you go,

Peewee. Put it on.


I'm sorry, boys.

That's all there are.

Don't worry. The

other team won't...

have any trouble

recognizing you.

Come on. Huddle.



Just give him the ball.


- Ready.




That your son?

Yes. Yes, it is.

Al Malette,

Elmira Star-Gazette.

What's his name?


His name is Ernie Davis.

Ernie Davis.


So you're the man

who owns Jim Brown.

I own the team.

He's his own man. Hey, Jim.

I think you've

done enough of that.

Mr. Modell,

just a few more?

This is the last time he's

gonna be on this field.

You've got plenty, Rex.

Boys, thank you very much.

That's good, we got it.

Jim, come over here.

All right, fellas.

Take a couple like this.

Nice big smile, Jim.

Hey, Jim, you

think you're ready?

Right here, Jim, look

here. Right here...

So Jim Brown's

gonna be wearing...

a Cleveland Browns jersey.

How's it feel?

It feels right.

Jim? Right here, Jim.

Dan Boyle,

Chicago Sun.

You had a terrific year

here at Syracuse, Jim.

Seven yards a carry,

broke records,

took your team to

the Cotton Bowl,

number one draft choice,

signed a big contract.

I'm guessing you're

pretty happy...

with the way

things turned out.

I could be happier.

You left something out.

You talking about

the Heisman Trophy, Jim?

I didn't win that.

Actually, no Negro

has ever won it.

And you're saying

you should have?

Now, if I say that...

the papers tomorrow will tell...

the story of the

angry Negro...

who doesn't know his place.

I know my place,

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Charles Leavitt

Charles Leavitt (born 1970) is an American screenwriter best known for writing the 2006 film Blood Diamond. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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