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And the winner is… five sports films for your consideration

It’s Oscar season and Paul Ring has turned his phone off, bought the popcorn and is sitting comfortably. Here’s his favourite sport movies.

IT’S OSCAR SEASON and The Fighter may have a sporting a chance, so in that spirit here’s five movies to consider should the action on the field lack that ending you want or have wagered on.

1: Raging Bull.

Manny Pacquaio and Floyd Mayweather aren’t getting it on anytime soon so why not sit back with the greatest sports movie of all time.

Martin Scorsese and Robert de Niro’s  epic centres on middleweight boxer Jake la Motta’s fights inside and outside the ring.

De Niro won an Oscar for his portrayal of La Motta, a fitting award for gaining 60 pounds before reprising the role and breaking one of Joe Pesci’s ribs during filming.

The detail during the fight scenes is unflinching. The producers squashed melons and tomatoes for the sound effects for the punches thrown.

None hit harder than De Niro’s “coulda been a contender” monologue.

2. Looking for Eric

Well he’s been found, alive and well, taking a bite out of the Big Apple.  You don’t need to worship at the alter of Eric to enjoy Ken Loach’s movie based on a postman in Manchester who suffers a mental breakdown and begins to imagine seeing his hero alongside him.

Cantona gives a good performance here playing a charismatic, enigmatic Frenchman who used to play for Manchester United.

The message of the  film is that the team is greater than the individual. It also allows Eric to say stuff like this :

3. Any Given Sunday

Sunday night is snore-bowl night so you are better off renting this and getting properly psyched for the real thing on Feb 6.

This is your standard Hollywood fare of loud music, big bangs and bombastic speeches. But it features two legends in Al Pacino and James Woods. LL cool J is also there but he doesn’t talk a lot.

The story is of the Dallas Knights and their struggles on the pitch trying to make it to the play-offs and off the pitch with an ruthless owner and a coach who may be past it. A grizzled old quarter-back is also trying to hold off a young buck.

The plot is basically an excuse to get to the end and let Al do his best Lombardi impersonation. If you are watching this on your lunch break, your productivity may increase after:

4. Tin Cup

Yes, Caddyshack is legendary but Roy McAvoy really sounds like Rory Mcllroy and it’s all about staying current right?

This is his story, played by Kevin Costner, the down-and-out pro who rolls into the US Open to give it one last shot.

There is also a girl involved and a tigerish battle ensues between him and arch-enemy David Simms. Many of the shots played were struck by Costner himself. He worked extensively with golf for dummies author Gary McCord.

Here he tries to figure out what has happened to his swing, connecting with the ball is usually the problem for me :

5. White Men Can’t Jump

The movie that taught us the difference between listening to Jimi Hendrix and hearing Jimi Hendrix. It tells the tale of Wesley Snipes as Sidney Deane and Woody Harrelson as Billy Hoyle. Two basketball hustlers trying to make the dollars to pay the man.

Bob Lainer, former Detroit Piston and hall of famer coached the two on set and suggested after that they were of  division three college level in bball skills. All we need is coaching kids.

Here’s why Sidney never made to the pros:

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About the author:

Paul Ring

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