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The 50 Greatest Sports Movies
We rank the very best sports films

Back Page 45 of 50 Next
6

Friday Night Lights (2004)

DIRECTOR Peter Berg
STARS Billy Bob Thornton, Jay Hernandez, Garrett Hedlund, Derek Luke

Unusually for the sports movie canon, Peter Berg spun this crackerjack effort into a (maybe even better) TV series. While we'd love to see Escape To Victory given the Hogan's Heroes treatment, nothing, not even a POW camp or those question marks over Sly Stallone's positional sense, feel as intrinsically dramatic as this tale of high school football in small-town Texas. Berg's great achievement – aside from introducing Taylor Kitsch to the world on NBC – was drawing out every drop of hope, despair… damnit, meaning from the lives of a small Texan town, as the locals lives ebb and flow in tune with their footballing heroes. Not just a great movie about sport, but a great movie about life.
Read Empire's review

QUICK POLL Should Friday Night Lights be higher or lower on the list?
Higher
Lower

The Stats
THE SPORT
American football
THE TEAM
The Permian Panthers
DOCUMENTARY?
No, but as a true-life tale, it'd make a cracking 'whatever-happened-to?' special.
DEFINING MOMENT
The final, heartbreaking attempt of star running-back James 'Boobie' Miles (Derek Luke) to overcome his career (and future)-threatening injury. It's Hoop Dreams goes gridiron and every bit as tough to watch.
KEY TACTICS
"Perfection". OK, it sounds better coming from Billy Bob Thornton.
Back Page 45 of 50 Next

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Have your say Agree with the list? Which sports movie would you add to the list? Register or login now to have your say.


Your Comments

1 Underdog film
Dodgeball certainly remains one of the classic underdog films, not just for its inspirational value, but its usual comedy, too. And perhaps some of the others could make this list too: http://www.ranker.com/list/best-movies-about-underdogs/ ranker-film Read More

Posted on Wednesday June 18, 2014, 18:51 by Imperion

2 See Also
Karate Kid, The Waterboy, The foot fist way, Hot rod, Caddy Shack, The mighty ducks, coach carter, blades of glory, mean machine, leatherheads, the ringer, nacho libre, kicking and screaming, baseketball, remember the titans, brians song, don king: only in america, cinderella man, million dollar baby, somebody up there likes me, the boxer, knuckle, bend it like beckham, fever pitch, zidane Read More

Posted on Saturday September 15, 2012, 18:42 by bnicholson50

3 RE: What the Hell!?
l largely an excuse for Chaplin to show off his legendary slapstick skills and rubbery physical abilities while poking fun at sports clichés and underdog stories, but it's still more entertaining than most of the films it skewers. ow exactly does Chaplin, in 1915, skewer films that are very very far from being made and poking fun at sports clichés that do not yet exist? Read More

Posted on Wednesday July 25, 2012, 00:42 by Evil_Bob

4 RE: Rocky - third place
BASEketball should totally be in here. Okay it's not a real sport, but it is a sport movie. And it's funny as shit wise a pretty damn solid list. (Rocky 2-4 should be included as well, but maybe that's being a bit greedy...) Read More

Posted on Tuesday July 24, 2012, 13:55 by Whistler


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