Film & Television

My Top 10 Sports Movies

By Calvin Berry

There is not many things better for a sports fan than a good sports movie.

The problem is that for every good sports movie there is a Goal 3 out there…

I have made a list of my top ten Sports Movies so it is only my opinion of the top ten sports movies and here they are;

10. Escape To Victory (1981)

How did a football movie set in a Prisoner of War camp become so popular?

The answer? Fill the team of Allied pow’s with the likes of Pele, Bobby Moore, John Wark, Osvaldo Ardiles, Michael Cane and Sylvester Stallone!

Add in evil Germans and a POW escape plan and you have Escape to Victory, one of the greatest sports movies ever made.

9. The Fighter (2010)

Mark Wahlberg puts on one of the best performances of his career as boxer Micky Ward in this sports drama.

Telling the story of Ward rising above family problems to make it in the world of boxing, the Fighter is a film about the relationship between the characters the same as if not more than it is about Ward‘s boxing career.

Put that together with Oscar winning performances from Christian Bale and Melissa Leo and you have one of 2010’s best films.

8.DodgeBall: A True Underdog Story (2004)

Ben Stiller has made some poor comedies over the past few years so going back and watching Dodgeball may be essential to remember how funny he can be.

Dodgeball tells the story of two rivals as small Average Joe’s gym owner Peter LaFleur (played by Vince Vaughn) tries to win the money in a dodge ball tournament to keep his gym from being bought by Globogym owner and rival White Goodman (played by Stiller.)

Stiller steals the show in a comedy which is full of memorable quotes and a great turn from Rip Torn as Dodgeball coach, Patches O Houlihan.

If that isn’t enough reasons for Dodgeball to be on the list then the Chuck Norris cameo seals its place!

7. The Damned United (2009)

Based on the book of the same name, Damned United is an interpretation of Brian Clough’s unsuccessful tenure as manager of Leeds United.

Featuring a great performance from Michael Sheen as Clough which was widely praised, The Damned United is a film which may be criticised sometimes for being largely fictionalised but is still very good film and always enjoyable watch when there is nothing else on.

6.Raging Bull (1980)

Raging Bull is regarded as a classic and no wonder, it is Martin Scorsese and Robert DeNiro at their best.

It is not a feel-good boxing movie and it doesn’t try to be. When it came out it divided critics however over the years it has gone to become known as one of the greatest movies ever made.

Raging Bull is a powerful film that may be dark and violent at times but never once do you want to look away or stop watching!

5. The Mighty Ducks (1992)

Released in 1992, this Disney hockey movie became a surprising hit that spawned two sequels, an animated TV series and even had an NHL team named after it!

Starring Emilio Estevez as Coach Bombay, The Mighty Ducks tells of the story of Coach Bombay being assigned community service, taking charge of a local peewee hockey team and from there the fun ensues!

With the likes of Fulton, Averman and Goldberg the goalie the Ducks fly to glory and entertains the viewers from start to finish, are you telling me you don’t quack along with Coach Bombay?!

4. Warrior (2011)

Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton shine as brothers in this Mixed Martial Arts film.

Warrior tells the story of two estranged brothers entering an MMA tournament while dealing with the struggling relationship between the brothers and their father.

Warrior is a touching drama that is as emotional as it violent. Hardy and Edgerton are on top form and Nick Nolte also puts in a great performance as the dad.

If you don’t feel emotional at the end of the film then you have no heart!

3. The Wrestler (2008)

The world of Professional Wrestling may be looked down on and seen as a joke by some however the Wrestler managed to show the dark side of wrestling and the struggles of the wrestlers involved.

Mickey Rourke is fantastic as Randy “The Ram” Robinson, an ageing wrestler who continues to wrestler despite health problems to try and cling on to the fame of his 1980s heyday.

From start to finish you are invested in the story of The Ram. Will he be able to relive his glory days one more time or is he past it?

The Wrestler may be dark but it shows that behind the world of weapons and storylines there is human beings and if that is not enough for you to want to watch the Wrestler, Marisa Tomei plays a stripper!

2. Rocky (1976)

Adriannnnnnnn!

Everyone can quote Rocky and everyone knows the music, Rocky is one of the greatest sports movies of all time and even won three Oscars in 1976, including the Academy Award for best picture.

Rocky is the ultimate underdog story. A rags to riches tale of Rocky Balboa, who manages to become a boxer and gain a shot at the World Heavyweight title.

Stallone is sometimes criticised for his acting performance’s however he is great in Rocky, a fighter who is not a super boxer but an average man with a big heart.

1. Space Jam (1996)

Who doesn’t love Space Jam?

The Looney Tunes teaming up with Michael Jordan to defeat the evil Monstars in a game of basketball, what is not to love?

Space Jam was one of my favourite films growing up and is still up there. It is always fun to watch.

Featuring a good soundtrack as well, Space Jam doesn’t seemed to have aged much and I have never met anyone who doesn’t like Space Jam.

Michael Jordan was a superstar at the time and the Looney Tunes have always been popular. Add in basketball and Bill Murray playing himself and you have the greatest Sports Movie ever made.

Have your favourites made the list? If not leave a comment to say what your favourite sports movies are.

You can follow Calvin on Twitter @calvin_berry as he discuss football, movies and various other interesting things. 

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