In the make-believe world of television and film, anything can happen, and in the 1980s, it predictably did. The term "Hollywood ending" exists because of the portrayals of a good story, but sometimes we don't always want the predictable conclusion.
The most beautiful thing about sports is that the conclusion is anything but predictable. Sure, statistics can point us to a probable outcome, but that's why they play the game. The ultimate reality show starts with the drop of a puck, a referee's whistle or a hearty "Play Ball!" The outcome is never predetermined, and the drama, blood, sweat and tears are all very real.
Before he was Charles in Charge or even Chachi, Scott Baio was teaching us about the perils of underage drinking in The Boy Who Drank Too Much. There was a chimpanzee named Jack with a wicked slapper and silky mitts in M.V.P.-Most Valuable Primate. Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson laced up his skates for a compelling role as The Tooth Fairy. There was also the token feel-good story of a former hockey player who decides he wants to do some ice dancing in The Cutting Edge.
If you are looking for any of those films on this list, please stop reading now. The Walmart budget movie hopper is calling, and you could probably find all four of those films for less than a dollar...combined. What did make the list was a collection of quality movies that either incorporate hockey or hockey players as the central theme. I know, it's fun to think about a monkey on skates, but maybe for a different list.
Like Hollywood, the world of hockey is filled with drama, suspense, comedy and triumph. Each of the following films capture that essence without being overtly cliched and over the top. Some of the pieces feature famous actors, while others are filled with unknowns. There will be more than one historical reboot on this list, and a couple of documentary-style films as well.
If you are a true hockey fan, then you need to make each one of these a part of your collection. You'll laugh for sure, you'll be inspired to hit the ice and, yes, tough guy, you might get a little "something" in your eye for a few moments. That's part of what moves us and what makes a movie great.
So get your popcorn ready, dim the lights and throw any of the following into the DVD player, or VCR/Beta where available. I promise you will enjoy now, or your money back!