It is the early months of a new year with new seasons of all of our favorite sports ramping up as the previous seasons come to a close. In this transition time it is some- times difficult to find media that can quench our thirst for competition, athleticism, and the love of our favorite games. Below is a list of ten sports-themed movies from a variety of competitions that can hopefully satisfy that hunger until the new round of seasons come into full form.
10. The Sandlot
Everyone should see this coming of age story at some time in their life (not to men- tion it has some great baseball scenes that will make you reminisce about playing lit- tle league as a kid). The Sandlot follows a group of Los Angeles boys as they spend a summer playing the sport they love, telling tall-tales, and trying to get out of trouble. When Scott Smalls hits a baseball worth a fortune over into a mysterious neighbor’s yard, he and his friends must face off with “The Beast”, a massive English Mastiff that has become legendary for its size and ag- gression, striking fear into the young base- ball players. If you like baseball, comedy and a fun story, this is absolutely a must-see movie for you.
9. The Replacements
Tell me, does anyone not love Keanu Reeves? When the Washington Sentinels team goes on strike, Coach Jimmy Mc- Ginty must pull together a rag-tag group of talented athletes to take their spots, led by Reeves’ character as quarterback. This is a great comedy with a group of unexpected heroes that will not fail to make you laugh along with some of the most ridiculous foot- ball playing that you have ever seen.
8. The Natural
Robert Redford stars as Roy Hobbs, a young man with a natural talent for the game of baseball who tries out for the Chi- cago Cubs. After suffering from some trau- matic events (I will not spoil the movie by elaborating), he returns to the sport 16 years later as a rookie on the worst team of the league, the New York Knights. As the team begins to turn their season around, Hobbs must also confront his past for hope of a bet- ter future. This movie is an inspiring tale of perseverance, second chances and the love of America’s Pastime.
7. McFarland, USA
Yet another movie with great star power, this one comes in the form of Kevin Cost- ner. He plays Jim White, a football coach that loses his job after unintentionally injur- ing one of his athletes in the midst of losing his temper, who relocates and again loses his job again as a coach when he pulls out a player for fear of him being injured badly. A story of second chances, White finally finds his place as he becomes the coach of the new cross-country team and realizes the po- tential in these athletes and gives them hope for a better future.
Let’s be honest: Rocky is an absolute classic, and it along with its subsequent sequels have gained popularity once again with the success of its spinoff movie se- ries Creed. The original Rocky movie fol- lows a young Italian enforcer and amateur boxer who is selected for a chance to go up against the champion, Apollo Creed. Writ- ten by Sylvester Stallone and starring him in the titular role, the film shows Rocky as he prepares for the biggest fight of his life. Packed with excellent training montages, a music score that you will never forget and some of the most realistic boxing in all of cinema, Rocky is the underdog story that you just can’t help but root for.
5. Ford vs. Ferrari
This is a more recent entry into the long history of sports cinema, as Matt Damon and Christian Bale star in the true story of the tense rivalry between two of the big- gest car companies of all time. If you don’t know the story of the collaboration between American Carroll Shelby and British Ken Miles as they fight Ferrari head-on at the 24-Hours of Le Mans, it is absolutely worth watching this fascinating story of one of the greatest rivalries in automobile and racing history.
Jackie Robinson is a legend in the history of professional sports as the first Black ath- lete in the modern era of baseball to have the chance to play in the MLB. This biographi- cal film follows the life of Robinson as he earns his spot on a farm team and eventually becomes one of the best players the Dodg- ers has ever had in a time when they were still located in Brooklyn. You will feel like you have gone back in time with this film, watching some of the incredible moments in which professional baseball was changed forever.
3. We are Marshall
Alright, alright, alright, I hope you are a fan of both football and Matthew McCo- naughey. If you are, this movie has both. This historical drama tells the story of one of the greatest tragedies suffered by an American college. The film follows the af- termath of Marshall University in the wake of losing 37 football players in a plane crash
that killed 75 people in total. You will be in- spired by a true story of perseverance, des- peration and reconciliation with this film, as the new head coach Jack Lengyel and the students of Marshall fight to keep their foot- ball program alive through a fighting spirit and a desire to honor the loved ones which they have lost.
If you are looking for a movie that will give you a sense of patriotism, look no fur- ther. Miracle tells the tale of Herb Brooks and his journey to turn the U.S. Olympic ice hockey team around, as he strongly believes that they can beat the powerhouse team that hails from the Soviet Union. Watch the un- orthodox methods of training and playing the sport of hockey that lead to the incred- ible game that has since been dubbed “The Miracle on Ice”.
1. Remember the Titans
By far, this film has to be one of the greatest sports movies of all time and one of the best pieces to have ever addressed the issue of racism and its negative impacts on American society. Denzel Washington gives one of his most moving performances of all time in this biographical film as he plays a new head coach at a school with an origi- nally all-white high school football team and fights to create a unity between them and the integration of new black students to the school and team. If they have any hope of winning their championship, the Titans must put their prejudices aside and come to- gether as a team, and an unexpected group of brothers.