I think that most of us can agree, when done right, sports movies can produce some of cinema’s most amazing feats. Of course, in the spirit of competition, we always end up arguing about which sports movies are the best of all time. Well, instead of trying to stir up debate about which movie is better than the rest, let’s just take a look at five great sports movies and celebrate what we love about them.
Unfortunately, these movies are all about traditional sports. Not many non-documentary films have been made about action sports (like air soft, paintball or obstacle racing) -even though many of those have some great stories in them as well.
The Blind Side – This is the true and inspirational story of Michael Oher, who escaped difficult circumstances to become a first round NFL draft pick. Sandra Bullock delivers a wonderful performance as Oher’s adoptive mother and the driving force in his life. It’s a great feel good story and forces an emotional reaction upon the audience. More importantly, the truth and realism in the story makes it a must-watch movie for any football fan.
Remember the Titans – This is another sports movie based on a true story, and one that also brings to light a part of American history and an important social issue. Denzel Washington leads a cast that’s full of recognizable faces to tell the story of how the high school football team in a racially divided community broke down barriers to achieve an undefeated season. Remember the Titans is far more than just a sports movie; it’s just a great move altogether, and one that sports fans and non-sports fans alike should see at least once.
The Express – This is a movie that told a sports story that not enough people knew about, which is the story of Ernie Davis, the first African American to win college football’s Heisman Trophy. The movie follows the story of Davis, as he follows in the footsteps of the great Jim Brown at Syracuse, helps Syracuse win a national championship, and ultimately wins the Heisman, all against the backdrop of the racial prejudice that filled the country in the 1950’s. The Express is a well-done movie that shares the story of one of the great civil rights accomplishments in sports history.
Miracle – This is a movie that any red-blooded American needs to see. Miracle tells the story behind arguably the greatest upset in sports history, as the United States defeated the Soviet Union in ice hockey at the 1980 Olympics in Lake Placid. Kurt Russell delivers a memorable performance, as he portrays the team’s head coach, Herb Brooks. Obviously, everyone knows how this one ends, but that doesn’t make the movie any less enjoyable.
Rocky – You can’t have a discussion about sports movies without mentioning Rocky. This is the ultimate underdog story, and it perfectly encapsulates everything we love about sports. It’s one of the most memorable and inspirational sports movies of all time, right down to the score. Every sports fan will see this movie at some point, and just about every one of them will surely love it.