Hockey and Hollywood
Hockey movies have not made it big in Hollywood. Hockey is still far too obscure a sport to be drawing crowds on a ‘couples night out’. Nevertheless, the film industry has made a few movies worth mentioning.
Slapshot- 9/10- Classic comedy film starring Paul Newman. Though the film is heavy on the laughter with the Hanson Bros. & Co., there are some unlying thruths in the script about life in minor pro hockey, such as a team folding as the Johnstown Chiefs of the ECHL did this past year. (* Note For Parents: Strong Language & Content*)
Youngblood- 8/10- 1980’s flick starring Rob Lowe and the late Patrick Swayze. One of the more realistic hockey films made, Youngblood follows a young teenager out to make a name for himself in Canadian Junior hockey. The film is great as it touches on some of the challenges players have in making it to the NHL. (* Note For Parents: Strong Language & Content*)
The Rocket- 8.5/10- Movie bio chronicles the life of the most famous Hab to ever wear the skates, Maurice ‘Rocket’ Richard. The film is a touching tribute about a player that changed the game through his play, and had the city of Montreal in an uproar.
The Mighty Ducks- 7/10- 1990’s Disney film starring Emilio Estevez is the lone hockey movie with some box office success. Tailored to kids, the movie was light and spirited, giving a boost to hockey in the Western USA. Even gave the new expansion NHL team in Anaheim their nickname.
Miracle- 7.5/10- Movie telling the great tale of the 1980 US Mens Olymic Team capturing the Gold Medal on home soil in Lake Placid. Great acting from Kurt Russell, as the late Herb Brooks, gets a little emotional, especially if you are an American citizen. This was an huge event for the growth of the US Hockey Program.
Slapshot 2- 2/10- Yes the Hanson Bros. came back, but the script and cast of true stars, such as Paul Newman, didn’t. Aweful attempt at stardom from lead actor Stephen Baldwin. An utter disappointment, this movie was a big mistake. Like Woodstock, the true classics should be left alone.
Mighty Ducks 2 & 3- 3/10- Like the original, these movies are meant to be enjoyed by kids. Unfortunately, the films insult even the youngest of minds and is just downright cheesy. Do not waste your family’s time or money on these.
Mystery Alaska- 4.5/10- Hollywood Megastar Russell Crowe puts on the blades and leads his group of small town Alaskan buddies against the New York Rangers in an exhibition match. Save your time and take a nap.
The Over Looked
Net Worth- 7.7/10- Set in the 1950’s This made for t.v. movie by CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Company) chronicling Hall of Famer Ted Lindsay and the formation of the NHL Players Union (now known as the NHLPA). This movie has great depth and shows the life and times of an NHL players in their challenges as professional athletes against the tyranny of the league/owners. This movie is a real eye opener.
There are a few good ones out there. Hopefully, in the near future we will see film produced that has true grit and realism about the gripping sport of hockey.
Grab Some Popcorn, and Catch a Hockey Flick,