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Some of the Best Sport Movies

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There are many different genres of films out there. The sports genre often seems more varied due to the sheer amount of different sports there are in the world and they can also be broken down into further subgenres within that field – biopic, documentary etc. What’s even better is that, if the film is well written, you do not even have to be a fan of the sport involved.

As time and technology move ever onwards new sports hit the zeitgeist. Thankfully none are like Rollerball or The Running Man, but the rise of esports brings huge crowds to stadiums and online for people playing video games. As with most sports, there is also a rise in esports betting which just makes it all the more mainstream.

Before too long there will be new movies set in and around esports, but until then let us take a look at some great sports movies out there. There is an incredible amount to choose from, but these are just a few of the ones that we keep returning to.

Rocky

The 1976 boxing movie has led to eight sequels (which include the Creed films), but the first is still the best. Sylvester Stallone wrote the film in three and a half days. He also starred in the film that went on to win an Oscar for Best Picture. It cost $1.1 million to make and earned $225 million in global box office receipts. Critics consider Rocky one of the greatest sports films ever made and the American Film Institute ranked it the second-best in the genre, after Raging Bull in 2008. Both are classics, but Rocky is eminently rewatchable. It is arguably Sylvester Stallone’s best film.

Rush

Sticking with the films beginning with R, we move on to 2013’s Rush that focussed on the real-life rivalry between two Formula One drivers, the British James Hunt and the Austrian Niki Lauda during the 1976 Formula 1 motor-racing season. Directed by Ron Howard, the film brought Marvel’s Thor and Baron Zemo together as Chris Hemsworth played Hunt and Daniel Brühl played Lauda. It showed the larger-than-life personality of Hunt and the dedication and focus needed to take part in motor racing. There have been some excellent documentaries looking at the sport – 2010’s Senna is a standout – but Rush really brought us into the drama and dynamics of the sport. Also worth checking out is 2019’s Ford v Ferrari aka Le Mans ’66.

The Wrestler

From the highs to the lows of sport and this time it is Mickey Rourke in Darren Aronofsky’s brilliant 2008 drama, The Wrestler. A psychological drama based around an aging wrestler, well past his prime, who still wrestles on a weekend while working in a supermarket the rest of the time. A chance to rekindle his former glory with a 20th Anniversary rematch sees him train hard, take steroids and look back on his life. The film received critical acclaim and won the Golden Lion Award at the 65th Venice International Film Festival. Mickey Rourke’s performance was brilliant and he went on to receive a BAFTA award, a Golden Globe Award, an Independent Spirit Award and an Oscar nomination for Best Actor. Marisa Tomei also received an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. A truly brilliant movie.

Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

From the sublime to the ridiculous. Sure, it is not a true official sport, but sometimes you need to have a laugh and 2004’s Dodgeball starring Vince Vaughn and Ben Stiller is one of the best for that. A group of misfits enter a Las Vegas Dodgeball competition to save their gym. On the way, we meet many strange and funny characters and that “if you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball.”

Remember the 5 D’s of dodgeball: Dodge, duck, dip, dive and dodge. If you are still looking for more ridiculousness you could always check out 1998#s BASEketball which stars South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone.

Field of Dreams

Finally, we get to baseball and a film that is truly wonderful. “If you build it, they will come” whispers a mysterious voice in a cornfield and we are taken on a journey into America’s passion for baseball and one man’s inner journey to make amends with his father. Starring an incredible cast – Kevin Costner, Ray Liotta, Amy Madigan, James Earl Jones, and Burt Lancaster (in his final role) – the film is one of a kind and, as stated at the beginning, it doesn’t matter if you like baseball or not. A magical, warm hug of a film.

There are many more excellent sport movies out there so let us know which are your favourites in the comments below.

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