It’s probably hard to find someone who hasn’t heard of the Iron Sheik, but very few people will know much about the real man behind the image. Khosrow Vaziri was born in Iran in 1942, becoming obsessed with wrestling at a young age. He trained alongside some of the best wrestlers in Iran, but left the country after it seemed his success could cause him problems there. He’s coached for the U.S. Olympic team, and eventually made a huge name for himself in the WWE. Life wasn’t always perfect though. Tragedy, and excessive drug use, took their toll on the Iron Sheik, who is finally making a comeback.
What begins as a very straightforward documentary about the Iron Sheik, and his incredible career, quickly turns into an emotional roller coaster, as The Sheik shows the former wrestler at his lowest point. After his daughter is murdered, Vaziri falls into drugs and alcohol, slowly destroying himself, and his family. It’s this side that the fans very rarely see, and it’s a shocking moment for anybody who remembers him at his peak.
Over the last couple of years, the Iron Sheik has been staging a comeback, something that is covered in the last third of The Sheik, and his outrageous personality is back on display, for all the world to see. The same strength, intelligence, and ability to be the ‘bad guy’ that made him popular in wrestling, are exactly what has brought him back, and every moment is worth the price of admission.
Is The Sheik Worth Watching?
A must see film for wrestling fans, but also a great film for everybody else. This is one of those times where it’s okay to cheer for the bad guy.
The Sheik Screening Times
- Saturday, April 26, 2014 at 9:15 pm at Bloor Hot Docs Cinema
- Sunday, April 27, 2014 at 4:30 pm at TIFF Bell Lightbox 1
- Saturday, May 3, 2014 at 6:30 pm at Bloor Hot Docs Cinema