Courtesy of United Artists
Sports movies have been a part of cinema since the movie industry began. Whenever I watch a sports movie, I always feel inspired. Some of the most inspirational movies are sports movies. Sports teaches us at a young age to never give up even when you fail multiple times. With that being said, here's my list of the top 10 sports movies of all time:
#10. 42 (2013)
42 tells the story of American hero Jackie Robinson. Robinson was the first person to break the color barrier in Major League Baseball. The story of Jackie Robinson is inspiring to anyone who watches the film. You see the struggle of a black man playing baseball during a racist America. The scene where the Philadelphia Phillies manager Ben Chapman is talking down to Robinson is truly heartbreaking. As the audience, you wonder how Robinson never gave up. It's a good thing he didn't because his impact on the baseball field and off the baseball field will never be forgotten.
#9. The Fighter (2010)
The Fighter tells the story of boxer Micky Ward, his struggles in his career and how he became world champion. This film is inspiring to anyone who is still chasing a dream. The acting in this film is amazing. Mark Wahlberg stars as Micky Ward and is great in the film. The scene stealer though is Christian Bale, who plays Micky's brother and trainer Dicky. It is directed by the great David O'Russell. Check it out if you haven't seen it.
#8. Cinderella Man (2005)
Cinderella Man is about a boxer named James Braddock. Braddock's time has come to an end as a boxer and now works as a day laborer during the Great Depression. Braddock's manager offers a one time shot to get back in the ring against a young contender. Shockingly, Braddock wins his fight and goes back into the ring full time. He earns a shot at the Heavyweight Championship of the World. Russell Crowe stars as Braddock and gives the performance of a lifetime. It's an inspiring story and it reiterates the message that you should never give up on your dreams.
#7. Warrior (2011)
This time we focus on an MMA movie. Warrior is the story of the Conlon family. Tommy Conlon is a former Marine with a tragic past and enlists his father Paddy Conlon to train him for an upcoming MMA tournament called "Sparta." Tommy's brother Brendan signs up for the tournament as well. Tommy's and Brendan's relationship has been rocky over the years. The only things that brings them together is when they meet in the octagon. This movie is a great fighting movie and a great movie about family. Sometimes we fight with our family but at the end of the day we have their backs no matter what.
#6. Rudy (1993)
Rudy is the true story of Rudy Ruettiger. Ruettiger has the dream of playing football at the University of Notre Dame. Everyone has a dream. Whether that is to be a professional athlete, a doctor, a firefighter, a teacher, a police officer, etc, everyone can relate to this movie. The coaches at Notre Dame don't want Rudy on the team, but he never gives up. His story is inspiring to anyone who has a dream. If you're looking for inspiration, watch this film.
#5. Miracle (2004)
Miracle tells the true story of the 1980 United States Hockey Olympic Team. That team produced one of the greatest upsets in sports history when they defeated the Soviet Union in the semifinals of 1980 Winter Olympics. Seeing the story of Herb Brooks and his hockey coming together was truly inspiring. The film does a great job of the importance of this team and why America needed something like that at the time. It is the best hockey film of all time.
#4. Million Dollar Baby (2004)
Million Dollar Baby is a sports movie I have never seen before. Sports films are usually very formulaic. This film does something different and that is why I love it. Million Dollar Baby tells the story of female boxer Maggie Fitzgerald and her trainer Frankie Dunn. Fitzgerald is played by Hiliary Swank and Dunn is played the legendary Clint Eastwood. The film is very formulaic to start but the third act throws you through a whole slew of emotions. I watched this film during the pandemic and it was one of the best movies I have seen in a long time. Watch it if you haven't yet.
#3. Field of Dreams (1989)
Field of Dreams is the story of a farmer named Ray Kinsella who builds a baseball field on his farm because he hears voices saying "If you build it, they will come." Ray builds the field and wonders who will come. Suddenly he sees Shoeless Joe Jackson and the rest of the 1919 Chicago White Sox come to his field and play baseball. "Is this heaven? No, it's Iowa" is one of the many famous quotes from this film. The ending to this film is great. I won't spoil it but it makes you think about family and I can say everytime I see the ending, I cry.
#2. The Wrestler (2008)
Some people might say this doesn't belong on the list because professional wrestling is not a sport. I disagree with this statement because professional wrestling is a sport. It might be scripted but the moves they perform in the ring is incredible. The Wrestler is the story of Randy "The Ram" Robinson. He is an older wrestler who's glory days are in his past. This is the saddest sports film of all time. It's heartbreaking to know some of my favorite wrestlers can turn out like Randy did in the film. His life outside of the ring is a mess and the only thing he loves and is good at is wrestling. Mickey Rourke stars as Randy and gives of the best performances I have ever seen. Watch it now, it's that damn good.
#1. Rocky (1976)
What can I say about Rocky that hasn't been said before? Rocky is the most inspirational film of all time. It makes you want to run through a brick wall. The training montage scene with the famous music playing and watching Rocky run up those steps gives me the chills every time. Other than that, the acting and story are fantastic. The relationship between Rocky and Adrian is great. It's a film you see on TV and you have to watch. Great movies are re-watchable and this is one of the most re-watchable movies of all time.
Do you agree with my list? Leave it in the comments below.
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