Monday, January 22, 2018

What makes a great Sports movie?

(0:36-end mark from the theme from the final season of American Gladiators original run play the camera moves back to see James on top of the slab with the words “The Last Of The Americans” on it before cutting to James physically in his office)

TLOTA:
I'm James Faraci The Last Of The Americans and The views I'm about to express are that of my own and some of yours. Watching all these movies about sports, the Olympics and everything else I noticed something of a formula. (Cut to different sports movies as James does a voiceover)

TLOTA (Voiceover):
And that's not a bad thing. Sometimes you need a good formula to a movie format. In the case of Sports movies there is usually either an underdog or a team of underdogs that are looked upon as jokes but slowly but surely are seen as equals with the exception of those who have been champions for so long everyone of the opponents is so beneath them they go through everyone without effort except the hard working underdogs who somehow found the right element that beats the champions and knocks them back to earth. Whether it'd be a wise mentor or something internal the underdogs find themselves sometimes rising beyond and becoming champs themselves. Now when it works, it's awesome and we get movies like "Rocky", "Creed", "The Bad News Bears" (The Original), "The Mighty Ducks", "Cool Runnings", "Miracle", "Angels In The Outfield" (Both the original and the remake with Christopher Lloyd) and others in the same vein. But when it goes bad it's the same as "Air Bud" movies, the "Bad News Bears" remake and the sequels to the "Angels In The Outfield" remake. (Cut to James physically)

TLOTA:
So when does the formula work and when doesn't it work.
(Cut to different sports movies as James does a voiceover)

TLOTA (Voiceover):
Part of it depends on the story. If the story isn't good then you can put in the best sport possible and it wouldn't matter because no one will buy it. Speaking of the sport, it has to be one that can get into easily , If it's something like say Racquets then the audience might not get what it's about and it could alienate the audience you were supposed to aim for and Also the characters have to be relatable even the stuck up champions have to relatable. That's why I not only liked Rocky but the villains had there likable moments even as someone as cartoonish and one dimensional as say George Washington Duke was likably bad. (Cut to James physically)

TLOTA:
But that's not what's entirely necessary to a movie's success. The audience has to be willing to accept that this movie will not be what they think it is. (Cut to the first Rocky movie as James does a voiceover)

TLOTA (Voiceover):
One of the reasons why the first Rocky movie was a success wasn't the fact the sport was the center of the movie. The focus was on Rocky and how he was before the offer of the shot to take on Apollo Creed for the championship and how he and the people react when he gets the shot and conversely how Apollo reacts or doesn't react as Rocky takes the match seriously. There's also how everyone is surprised to see how the two went the distance and for Rocky THAT was more worth it than winning the championship. (Cut to James physically)

TLOTA:
However, the formula is very easy to screw up under the wrong circumstances. (Show clips of Air Bud and it's multitude of sequels as James does a voiceover)

TLOTA (Voiceover):
The reason we can suspend our disbelief towards certain things in the Air Bud movies is yeah a basketball playing dog is something I can see. But when the sequels put him in crazier scenarios yeah even the most hardcore Sports movie fan is looking at this franchise while goofy fun does tend to wear a bit thin on the nerves of even the most casual film fan. (Cut to James physically)

TLOTA:
So is there a way to make every sports fan and movie fan happy with sports movies? Well, it depends on the movie itself. (Cut to clips of Sports movies as James does a voiceover)

TLOTA (Voiceover):
It has to be a sport that people not only know about but love, know about or want to know about and get into. The characters must be likable even the antagonists of the movie. The story must support the characters and the sport without making the sport the center of the movie. The finale must either be supportive to the heroes whether they win or not. The audience also has be invested in everything with what is going on with the characters. I know it sounds basic but that is what makes not only a great sports movie but great movies in general. If you can do that while keeping the formula fresh, there's no reason why you can't please everyone who love sports and movies. Just keep the formula fresh enough to keep everyone coming and keep some sports stars away from La-La Land. We've got plenty of them in the acting game as is. (Cut to James physically)

TLOTA:
I'm James Faraci The Last Of The Americans and that's my opinion.