Five Observations about Sports-Themed Movies

Jennifer TaglioneCorrespondent IJanuary 7, 2009

I admit I do have a slight guilty pleasure when it comes to movies—besides my love of Lifetime movies on a rainy Saturday afternoon (because really, who doesn't love those?). I have a thing for sports movies and the sad part is, the actor doesn't even have to be hot to get me to watch it (although it does help). I think I've been addicted ever since I saw Rudy when I was younger.

After extensive research for my Movie Archive and Bookshelf blogs, I came across a lot of...reoccurring themes, if you will. Some are obvious. Some are just the strange way my mind works.

My Observations of Sports Themed Movies

1. Disney & Sports Flicks go together like arm, gooey chocolate brownies, and ice cream. (Oh who am I kidding, brownies go well with everything. Then again, now that I think about it, so does Disney. Hmm, good analogy).

The evidence: Tons of Disney production films—some of them blockbuster successes and critically acclaimed. And all of them are heartwarming, or at least inspiring, and loved by pretty much everyone that saw them.

  • Angels in the Outfield
  • Invincible
  • Miracle
  • Remember the Titans
  • The Rookie
  • Glory Road
  • Mighty Ducks (and all their sequels)
  • The Greatest Game Ever Played

And those are only the ones I used for reference on my Best Sports Movies lists. There are actually a few dozen more. Check out more Disney Movies for a complete list.

2. Baseball movies are to A-List actors as Lifetime Movies are to has-been C-Listers.

Really, big name actors seem to flock to do a baseball theme movie the way that all our old favorite '90s stars head to Lifetime or Hallmark. My top baseball movie lists for both guys and gals are chock full of stars, more so than any of the other sports genred films. Why is that?

The Evidence:

- Drew Barrymore, Jimmy Fallon, Madonna, Tom Hanks, Geena Davis, Rosie O'Donnell, John Cusack, Charlie Sheen, Christopher Lloyd, Kim Basinger, Susan Sarandon, Robert Redford, Robert Duvall, Ray Liotta, James Earl Jones, Freddie Prinze, Jr., Brittney Murphy, Jessica Biel, Kelly Preston, Dennis Leary, Tim Robbins, and Matthew McConaughey.

Just to name a few!

3. If No. 2 is true, than Kevin Costner is Tracy Gold. Or Tori Spelling.

It is still undecided who the Lifetime Movie champion actress of all time is but those two always seem to get top bids. And sometimes it feels like there isn't a baseball movie that Kev isn't in! And then I found him in a golf movie and totally freaked out. I think they should switch the game from Six Degrees/Kevin Bacon to Six Degrees of Sports Movies and Kevin Costner. This man can't get enough!

The Evidence:

  • Bull Durham
  • Field of Dreams
  • For the Love of the Game
  • Tin Cup—aka the Bull Durham of golf movies

4. If you aren't an inspiring true story about an underdog, don't bother.

Okay fine, you don't have to be true. You can be a tale about a washed up old guy trying to make it. But that just represents the dream of every guy in the world who is not an athlete and they really, really, really wished it was a true story.

The Evidence: Um... Pretty much every sports movie in existence.

5. Basketball Sucks.

I don't mean really. I mean in the movie world. There is a severe shortage of basketball-themed movies. And of those that are out there, only a few are actually really good. Since this is my favorite sport (and the one that really showcases hot men!) I am very disappointed.

When I did the baseball movie list I had so many great movies to choose from that I was able to make two separate lists! I could barely make one for basketball. Why is that?

The Evidence:

I almost had to put Basketball Diaries on the list until I found The Pistol. And while I will never talk bad about a movie with Leo DiCaprio and Mark Wahlberg in it, I will point out that BD has very little to do with basketball. More about the dark side and drugs.

You go try to find more than the ones that are on my basketball movie list that are actually good!