The Top 20 Sports Movies Ever
Awhile back I was reading a list of the Top 20 Sports Movies Ever and I was stunned by the author leaving off "A League of Their Own" and the "Sandlot". I decided there and then that I would make my own list. The list has been changed and re-ordered many, many times, but I thought it was time I put it up. Here's my Top 20 Sports Movies Ever
There's always drama when the Giants and Cowboys play each other--even in the pee wees. The Little Giants are underdogs you love to cheer for, and only in a movie would a kid find John Madden, Emmitt Smith and some other football greats on the side of the road looking for directions.
#19-"Rookie of the Year"
What kid wouldn't want to live out their dream of playing in the major leagues? Henry Rowengartner was every kid's idol as the flame throwing twelve year old for the Chicago Cubs. However, Daniel Stern provided the comedy in this flick as the absent minded pitching coach who spent more time locked in closest than giving sound pitching advice.
It's a sports movie that is more known for it's hot young actors and Ali Larter's whipped cream bikini than a great sports story, but it's definitely entertaining with the wild parties, strip clubs, oh yeah and some good football scenes too. If you're looking for a feel good movie, keep looking it's just not that kind of movie, but still worthy of the list.
#17-"The Longest Yard "(2005)
Definitely a lighter version from the original. Adam Sandler, Chris Rock as well as Michael Irvin, Nelly, and Goldberg led the All-Star cast to make for quite the comedic movie. Burt Reynolds reprised his role as Nate Scarborough from the original movie only he acted as the team coach this time around.
#16- "The Replacements"
Teams should take a lesson on team unity from this bunch. After all the team that throws up, fights, and goes to jail together is the team that wins together, right? And any group of guys that can do the electric slide to "I Will Survive" should get some kind of kudos shouldn't they?
"Are you trying to say that Jesus Christ can't hit a curve ball?"--one of the many great quotes from this movie. These Cleveland Indians went from zeroes to heroes, but more memorable was Joe Bu & Charlie Sheen as Wild Thing and his dorky yet cool black glasses.
#14-"Million Dollar Baby"
Hilary Swank's transformation into a boxer is incredible. The relationship between her and Clint Eastwood's characters is overly touching and Morgan Freeman does his thing as the gym janitor/confidant to both Clint and Hilary's characters.
#13- "Slap Shot"
Paul Newman leads this rowdy team of hockey players in this comedy. The Hanson brothers lead the pack as the enforcers who act more like unruly frat boys than hockey players, but it's still good to see the team come together and Paul Newman on skates.
#12-"The Mighty Ducks"
Quack attack. The Oreo Line. The Flying V. Cake Eater. Names you would only hear in this classic Disney movie about an attorney (Emilio Estevez) who gets sentenced to community service after a DUI--cause only a Disney movie would let a guy with a drinking problem coach kids and come out on top. A feel good and highly entertaining flick.
Gene Hackman gives a great performance in this movie as head coach Norman Dale. He's got some major hurdles to over come like a group of undisciplined athletes, a bunch of second guessing fathers, among other things. Hackman's pre-game speech before the championship game is truly moving and the team proves that everyone deserves a second chance
#10- "Bull Durham"
Kevin Costner plays the aging minor league catcher Crash Davis who is assigned to help up and coming pitcher "Nuke" LaLoosh. He quickly brings the rookie down to earth by referring to him as "Meat" and helps him make it to the big show. Susan Sarandon serves as the baseball groupie with her own perspective on the game and has her way with both players.
Robert Redford lived out every man's dream as a guy well beyond his prime who does the impossible and plays for a professional baseball team. This "wonder boy" shows that nothing is impossible if you want something bad enough you can do it. Even grown men have been known to cry when Redford hits a ball that knocks the lights out at Wrigley Field.
This movie is the embodiment of nothing is impossible if you really believe in yourself. Rudy is a movie about a guy who shows everyone around him that it's not the size of a person that matters, but the size of his will and his heart. You find yourself rooting for him the entire movie, and when he finally gets in the game and everyone in the stadium is chanting "Rudy!" you can't help but get goosebumps.
"You're killing me Smalls!" Every kid that grew up in the 90's knows if anyone says that line they are referring to the Sandlot. It's a movie that reminds us of the innocence of youth and how much friendships formed at a young age can impact someone's life.
Ok, before everyone goes crazy about me choosing this over the first movie hear me out... The build up to the re-match was just way better than the first fight, and since the audience already knew the characters it was better on that level too. And you gotta love him chasing the chicken and the run up those Philadelphia stairs with all the neighborhood kids...but the most memorable.. "Yo Adrian, I did it!"--classic.
#5-"Remember the Titans"
Denzel Washington is amazing as coach Herman Boone in this Disney movie based on a true story about the integration of a black and white high school in Virginia in the 70s. Coach Boone and his staff teach not only the players, but the town that it was time to look past color. The team ruled on the football field like Titans and went on to have an undefeated season. Most definitely a heartwarming, feel good movie.
Kurt Russell plays coach Herb Brooks who took a bunch of college hockey players and turned them into Olympic Champions at the 1980 Olympics. At a time of great turmoil in US history, the Olympic team provided hope for people who felt like they had lost all of it. It was in the game against the Russians that Al Michaels coined his famous phrase, "Do you believe in miracles?" After seeing this movie anyone who didn't believe before, should.
#3-"A League of Their Own"
"There's no crying in baseball!"--one of the most well known quotes in all of sports' movies. Tom Hanks and Geena Davis lead an all-star cast in this movie that's based on the true story of the women who filled in for the male ball players who got drafted during World War II. It's a movie that's full of laughs, tears, and leaves you feeling really good at the end.
#2-"Field of Dreams"
"Build it and they will come"--that's the voice that Kevin Costner heard in his corn field in this movie. Costner plays Iowa farmer, Ray Kinsella who hears a voice one day that tells him to build a baseball field where he grows his corn crop. Sure enough, a bunch of dead former major league players (like Shoeless Joe Jackson) show up and start playing. It is the field that allows him to reconnect with his deceased father and is one of the most touching scenes in the movie.
Barry Pepper and Thomas Jane star in this movie directed by Billy Crystal, as Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle. The movie documents the 1961 season where Mantle and Maris were on the chase to beat Babe Ruth's single season home run record. The movie covers the season in depth, and the recreation of Yankee Stadium during the 60s allows young fans to feel like they are experiencing a part of sports' history when Maris hits his 61st home run to pass the Babe.