When We Were Kings stars Muhammad Ali and George Foreman. These are two of the most notorious boxers in heavyweight champion history. George Foreman is the current heavy weight champion and Muhammad Ali is deemed by the people to be done with boxing due to his age. Don King offers each of them five thousand dollars to fight each other. Once the two boxers decide to fight, Don King must find the money he has promised each of them, by getting backed from the ruler of Zaire.
Muhammad has the love of the people in Zaire, but Foreman has been unsuccessful in gaining their love and trust. With James Brown and B. B. King performing in Zaire, this is the first opportunity for Don King to show the nation his true talent. The Black Woodstock festival is seen in this movie before the main event between Ali and Foreman, which adds an important soulful taste to this time period. One of Ali's famous moves, known as "rope-a-dope" causes Foreman to waste his energy and ends the fight in the eighth round with a total knockout. A move called "right-hand lead" was used in all of the previous rounds to wear Foreman down, but this move is not often used, due to the fact that it sets a boxer up for an effortless takedown. In return it worked in Ali's favor, because Foreman did not expect it. Ali is known for his quickness and the use of the ropes to his advantage to downplay the treacherous punches he takes from Foreman. In the end, Ali defeats Foreman and takes title as heavy weight champion, which was his to start with before it was taken from him for dodging the draft during the Vietnam War.