The dog days of summer are here, but football is slowly inching closer. Training camp has begun, and one of my favorite things about getting ready for the upcoming season is watching some of my favorite football movies. A couple of them are absolute classics and some of them are absolutely horrible (Hey I like the "Replacements" as much as any other football fan, but come on...). I tend to talk more about stats and free agency on here (along with pessimistically endorsing Jake Locker). So this is to lighten the mood a little
I would say that baseball movies are much better in quality and acting for the most part, but it's much easier filming a baseball movie than a football movie. I think some of them are getting better as the years have gone on, but I'm not saying there aren't any good football movies. i will argue that my top three are actually pretty good films, let alone decent football movies.
First I'll put down my guilty favorites, before actually putting down my quality top 3.
"Any Given Sunday"- This movie gets a bad rap for putting the negative light on players and over glamorizing the aspect of players off the field, but Pacino's Landry-esque speech in the playoff game is great. Plus the football scenes are pretty intense, and Lawrence Taylor playing a doped up legendary linebacker probably wasn't that hard for him to get into character for.
"Varsity Blues"- Take away James Van Der Beek's atrocious west Texas accent and you could actually have a good movie here. If anyone has ever seen High School football in Texas, you soon realize how insane some of those small towns are. I watched this when I played football in High School and it's arguably the one football movie I watch every pre-season.
"The Blind Side"-This may be higher on other people's list, but to me its just another feel good football movie, and my number 3 movie of all time is a tad better. The movie itself is great and I do like how they lightly touch on how crazy college football recruiting is.
a couple more are "North Dallas Forty", "Little Giants", and "Silver Linings Playbook" (technically it isn't a football movie, but the De Niro playing an insane Eagles fan is pretty funny and a lot of scenes revolve around the Eagles. In particular the tailgate party).
My top 3 favorite football movies of all time are as follows.
Number 3: "Brian's Song"
Now I know a lot of the younger readers here on MCM have never seen Brian's Song, and I'm talking the original with James Caan and Billy Dee Williams, not the Disney remake. Not only is "Brian's Song" a good football movie, but it is arguably the best movie to make any grown man cry. Everyone reading this was thinking that at first, but it's one of the best heartbreaking sports movies ever made.
Number 2: "Remember The Titans"
No surprise this Disney classic made it on my list, but maybe it surprised some of you that it isn't number 1. Any self respecting Titans fan would have to put this in their list of best football movies. If some of you have been going to Titans games since they have been on the east bank, then I'm pretty sure you've seen clips of this movie play on the jumbo tron. Yes it may be a tad cheesy, but the historical aspect of it and most of the football part of being fairly accurate makes it a must see for any football fan.
NUMBER 1: "Friday Night Lights"
If you haven't seen this movie, then download it right now or go out and buy it. The book itself is great, but the movie is almost spot on to the book. Unlike "Varsity Blues", "Friday Night Lights" has a more gritty feel to it, and feels more real. The football scenes aren't too over the top either. The overbearing parents and the constant pressure to win state in a town the same size as Fayetville is accurate as well. Billy Bob Thorton is pretty good as the head coach and Mooby Miles character is spot on.
Agree or disagree, tell me what you think in the comments. Add your own list's or mention any movies I missed.