Sports and films generally are not always associated with each other. But when the two are combined in the right way it produces one of two things, either a deep, inspirational film. Or it may produce a piece of comedy gold. As someone who has a great passion for sports myself these films appeal to me massively. Films like these often form a sense of unity between a group of people or a nation. Furthermore films such as Ronaldo and Goal! subvert the genre slightly by primarily focusing on an individual success story. Here is a list of my favourite sport films that make you feel good about life.
Ronaldo is the first film on the list. After winning the Ballon d’Or in 2014 and previously in 2013 film producer Anthony Wonke made a film that examines the life and successes of famed footballer Cristiano Ronaldo. This film is a nonfictional documentary that offers inspiration to any young person who has dreams of making it to the first team of their favourite football club. Much like Cristiano Ronaldo did when he was a young child. He grew up in rough conditions but after his mother sent him to Lisbon, Portugal he got one huge break and grab it with both hands and was able to achieve his dreams.
The second film on my list is Invictus. Invictus doesn’t just focus on sport, particular rugby, it also focuses on politics. Post-apartheid era Nelson Mandela became the president of South Africa. But the country was still economically and racially divided. Nelson Mandela (Morgan freeman) tries to break this divide by uniting the country through the universal language of sport. Trying to win the 1995 rugby world cup seems a long shot at first but after a few great team performances dreams become reality.
Cool Runnings is the next film on this sporting list. The 4 young Jamaican young men have hopes of reaching the Olympic Games but instead of attempting the traditional sports such as the 100m’s and long and high jump. The four young men attempt to build a bobsled team in hope of reaching the winter Olympics in Canada. The film is based on the true story of 1988 when the Jamaican national team made it to the Olympics but unfortunately were unable to finish after a crash on their third run which was set to be in the top 10 after a excellent start. This film makes the list for tow mains reasons, firstly parts of the film are absolutely hilarious. And secondly because of the inspiration it set for people who want to step outside of their comfort zones.
Goal! Is one of my absolute favourite films of all time. The film acted as a inspiration to me and my friends when we were younger and really helped us push to just be that little bit better than what we thought we could be when it came it playing football. The film is based on Santiago Munez who is a young football addict who is offered a placement at Newcastle football club in the UK… which is 6000 miles away from his home in Mexico. His father doesn’t want him to go but his grandmother has other ideas. The film has a real feel good factor and is the first of a 4 film series. The first being the best as many series are similar.
Karate kid is a classic film which is very highly rated, with a 7.2/10 on IMDb which is very high considering it was produced in 1984. The film is about a young boy, Daniel, who moved to southern California with his mother. His life changed completely he lost all his friends and began to become bullied at his new area. Fortunately Daniel befriended Mr Miyagi, a repairman who also happens to be a martial arts expert. Mr Miyagi takes Daniel under his wing and makes him into the karate kid. The film does now have an updated modern version but it does not have the same sentimental value as the original. Although still being an excellent film!
She’s The Man
The sixth film on the list is a more indie film called she’s the man. This film on the face is about how a pair of twins, one boy one girl, cover for each other and it ends up in a rather complicated yet cliché love story. But there is also a deeper meaning. Viola (Amanda Bynes) is a girl who wants to play football or “soccer” at her American collage but it is not seen to be right for girls to be playing football but the opportunity arises when she swaps places with her twin brother and shares a room with Duke (Channing Tatum). This film makes the list because of its comedy value as well as its expression of females in the eye of football.
Remember The Titans
Remember the titans is another film that is politically based alongside sport. Published in 2001 (UK) the films main character is Coach Herman Boone, played by Denzel Washington. The coach is introduced to be the coach of an American football team in a newly racially integrated collage in Virginia. The white players do not get along with the black players and vice versa but with team unity Coach Boone knows no success will be achieved and it is his job to turn it around. This film is another that subverts the general film genre because it is from the coaches perspective rather than the players.
In Iran women are banned from watching any form of sporting matches. But this does not stop Iranian females from tying to get in on a piece of the action as they attempt to masquerade as males so they can slip into Tehran’s stadium to see the game between Iran and Bahrain (a world cup qualifying match). The ones who are caught and arrested are taken to a holding area and guarded by soldiers. Unusually one sympathetic soldier agrees to watch the game through a peephole and recount the action to the impatient fans. Again this is another film which illustrates a divide in the male and female sporting community and really has a feel good inspirational feel to it.