Disney's recreation of the U.S. Olympic Hockey Team's history journey to the gold medal in 1980 starred Kurt Russell as legendary coach Herb Brooks and Patricia Clarkson as his wife. The film received mostly favorable reviews, scoring an 80% on Rotten Tomatoes, and continues to appeal to new generations. The film even spawned this adorable viral video, in which a four-year-old boy reenacts Russell's heartwarming and inspirational pre-game speech.
Written by Jay Baruchel and Evan Goldberg, Alliance Films debuted Goon at the Toronto Film Festival. The comedy stars Sean William Scott as a bar bouncer who lands a gig as an enforcer – the player whose sole job is to protect his teammates – on a minor league hockey team in Massachusetts. Baruchel and Liev Schreiber also star.
'The Mighty Ducks' (1992)
Disney's formulaic and predictable sports movie about a ragtag Twin Cities ice hockey team led by Gordon Bombay (Emilio Estevez) may have been panned critically, but it spawned two sequels (1994 and 1996), an animated series, a “quack!” war cry heard ‘round the world and, most significantly, a real-life NHL team. What other sports movie has that claim?
'MVP:Most Valuable Primate' (2000)
If golden retrievers can play basketball and zebras can race against less-patterned horses, then why can't a chimpanzee play hockey? They have the thumbs for it. MVP actually came from the same producers as cinematic sports icon Air Bud but it lacks its predecessor's lingering direct-to-video empire. The short-lived franchise died with MVP3: Most Xtreme Primate.
'Slap Shot' (1977)
Aging like a fine wine, Slap Shot may have received lukewarm reviews back in 1977 (due mostly to its shocking violence), but has become one of the most beloved sports film over the years. The racy, and outrageous-for-its-time comedy starring Paul Newman and Michael Ontkean was deemed the greatest hockey movie of all time by ESPN's hockey analyst Barry Melrose in 2012.
'Strange Brew' (1984)
The distinctly Canadian The Adventures of Bob & Doug McKenzie: Strange Brew brought the popular SCTV characters (played by Dave Thomas and Rick Moranis) to the big screen. It also solidified "hoser" in the American lexicon and set northern stereotypes back several decades.
'The Cutting Edge' (1992)
Toe pick! Doug Dorsey (D. B. Sweeney) is a washed up hockey player who pairs up with a spoiled figure skater (Moira Kelly) to compete in the 1988 Winter Olympics. While the original has become a cult classic, the three sequels (2006, 2008, 2010), which starred almost completely different casts, never captured the lovable cheesiness of the original, falling as flat as Dorsey on his toe-picked skates.
'The Tooth Fairy' (2010)
In his continuing effort for putting family-friendly fare on his resume, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson starred in 20th Century Fox's critically panned, but commercially successful, film as a minor league hockey player nicknamed "The Tooth Fairy" (he has habit of hitting opponents so hard the he knocks their teeth out). After stealing a dollar from his girlfriend's daughter, left for her by the "real" tooth fairy," Johnson's character sprouts wings and is tasked with fulfilling the duties of the mythical tooth fairy for two weeks as punishment.
Rob Lowe starred as Dean Youngblood, an aspiring hockey player who has to learn to fight if he wants to survive the terrors of Canadian minor league hockey. While this movie had plenty of faults, it also had Lowe, Patrick Swayze and Keanu Reeves combined with plenty of 80s music. So basically a win-win.
'Mystery, Alaska' (1999)
On paper, this one should have been a hit: A successful director (Jay Roach) and an a-list star (Russell Crowe) team up for a love letter to small towns and the human spirit from TV's go-to legal drama mind (David E. Kelley). Somewhere along the line this flick got it wrong -- and after critics were largely unkind, it ended up grossing a $20 million shy of its estimated budget.
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