Sunday, March 16, 2008

The calm before the storm - Movie edition

I've been a little remiss in my posting lately, trying to get my new practice up and running. I've got a tiny little office in the back of a scuba shop, and a couple of clients, but a long way to go.

Plus, there isn't much news to be had until spring ball gets underway. That said, I've had a little bit of time on my hands this weekend, and while we wait for spring ball to start, I was watching a little TV this morning. There were a bunch of sports movies on the tube, so I watched The Legend of Bagger Vance, and am currently watching Varsity Blues as I write this post.

All these sports movies got me wondering what the greatest sports movies of all time were.

Certainly, that title is far too subjective to come up with a definitive answer, but I thought I'd take it on anyways. Obviously, a person's rooting interests and hometown can have a significant impact on this discussion as well, but I'm going to take a couple of weeks and several posts to take it on.

To do this right, I'm going to need some help from you, the readers.

To start this off right, I want to get a list of the best movies for each sport to review. So, if you have a couple of minutes, I'd like you to help me round out the following list of films. Feel free to nominate your favorite movies in each category that I might have missed, and I'll try to get caught up on the films I haven't seen yet.

The list of all sports movies is far too long, so I'm only looking for movies that have enjoyed a significant amount of popular and critical praise, or have at least developed a strong cult following. The list is going to trend towards more dramatic films, but particularly good comedies are included as well.

This list is only the movies I've seen, so if a great film is left off, that's why - please leave it in the comments so I can get up to speed on the great films. Movies in the list below with an asterisk are films I haven't seen yet, but need to...


High School
Varsity Blues
Friday Night Lights
Remember the Titans
Little Giants
Gridiron Gang

College / Amateur
The Program
The Waterboy
The Longest Yard
Knute Rockne: All-American
We Are Marshall
Necessary Roughness

Any Given Sunday
Brian's Song
Jerry Maguire
The Last Boy Scout


High School
Basketball Diaries
Finding Forrester
Love & Basketball
Teen Wolf
Coach Carter*

College / Amateur
It occurred to me the other day that I've never seen a college basketball movie, despite my annual March Madness obsession and love of the Hoosiers. Help me figure out what to watch to fill this category out!
Glory Road*
White Men Can't Jump*

Blue Chips
Celtic Pride


High School / Sandlot
The Sandlot
Field of Dreams
Bad News Bears

College / Minor Leagues
For The Love of The Game*
A League of Their Own
Bull Durham

Major League
Angels in the Outfield
The Babe
The Natural*
Eight Men Out*

The Mighty Ducks
Mystery, Alaska*
Slap Shot*

The Legend of Bagger Vance
Happy Gilmore
Tin Cup*
The Greatest Game Ever Played*

Rocky (this subsumes all 27 Rocky movies...)
Cinderella Man
Million Dollar Baby
Raging Bull
The Hurricane*
Honorable Mention: On the Waterfront* ("I coulda been a contender. I coulda been somebody.")

Speed Racer* (Coming soon...)
Talladega Nights
The Fast and the Furious
Herbie movies
Days of Thunder
National Velvet

Olympic Sports and Other
This category includes track and field, cycling, swimming and diving, and is a general catch-all for anything that might not have been included above.
Breaking Away
Cool Runnings
The Big Lebowski
Chariots of Fire
Ready to Rumble
Karate Kid

I hate soccer. They are automatically disqualified from consideration. So are surfing movies.

So that's my list. Let me know what I've missed, and the next posts will start separating the contenders from the pretenders.


Sir John said...

Thats a lengthy list Law Dog. I see some that i have viewed but many I have not. I'll need some time to stuy it. A very nice job tho.

KentAllard said...

It may be a little further back than you want to go, but Pride of the Yankees should definitely be considered among baseball flicks, even if you hate the Yankees. Kudos for excluding soccer

Bill said...

Slap shot is an absolute classic. Don't forget The Replacements for pro football. I vote for Tin Cup and Major League. Big Rene Russo fan.

Meghan said...

For basketball: He Got Game, Air Up There, The Sixth Man

For baseball: Hardball, 61*

For other sports: Wimbledon, Prefontaine

Other than that good job.

john austin back pain said...

That is a pretty extensive list and a good one.

My favs:

Sea Biscuit
The Hustler – a stretch
Enter the Dragon – another stretch
Chariots of Fire – the best
Cinderella Man
Brian's Song
Slap Shot
The Rookie
The Natural
Tin Cup
Remember the Titans