Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Sports Movie Weekend

Did you all have a nice long President's Day weekend? Heartfelt condolences to those of you who still had to work for The Man yesterday.

I watched three movies this weekend, and they all had to do with sports. I am not into sports at all, normally... but if the story holds my attention, then I can deal with a movie about any given game. Two of the movies were awesome, but one was just silly. I bet you can guess which one of these three was fairly ridiculous: We Are Marshall, Bend it Like Beckham, and Nacho Libre.

We Are Marshall

This movie had been recommended to me by several people, so I moved it to the top of our Netflix queue in order to watch it with my visiting relatives this weekend. My cousin had already seen it, but said that it was good enough for him to want to watch again. It's the true story of the football program at Marshall University, which suffered a devastating loss of nearly its entire team in a plane crash back in 1970. The bulk of the movie is about how a new coach rebuilt the team, and the effects that effort had on the town and the people who lived there who had lost loved ones in the crash. I thought it was great and would highly recommend it--plus, it has two of the best-looking Matthews in the world: Matthew Fox (Jack on Lost) and Matthew McConaughey. Not to mention an awesome soundtrack. There's just enough football action for people who enjoy that sort of thing, but not too much for those of us who aren't that into it. Mostly it was just an incredible story. Here's a 30-second trailer for ya:

Bend it Like Beckham

I had seen this movie when it came out, but enjoyed it enough to watch it again (about five years later) with my husband, who missed it the first time around. While this one isn't a true story, it feels like it could be. It's about Jess, a Indian teenager, during her summer before college when she starts playing for a local girl's soccer team. Her parents freak out when they discover what she's doing, and essentially ban her from playing. It's a hilarious take on Indian culture and there's a great moral to the overall story. The woman who played Jess is now a regular on ER, and the movie also put Keira Knightley and Jonathan Rhys Meyers on the map. I seriously can't think of anyone I know who wouldn't enjoy this movie, so if you haven't seen it, you should! When the movie premiered in 2002, most Americans probably didn't even know who David Beckham was, but now I bet they do. Or at least they know his wife, Posh Spice!

Nacho Libre

I remember seeing the trailer for Nacho Libre and thinking, "That is going to be awesome!" Jack Black + masked wrestling = rockin' movie, right? Well, not really. Everyone pretty much hated Nacho Libre, so my expectations were really low going into it. I knew that it wasn't as much of a comedy as it had been marketed to be, and that the general consensus was that the director (who also made Napoleon Dynamite) was "trying too hard to make it into a cult classic." I agree with that last assessment... there were many shades of Napoleon Dynamite in the movie, and I sensed that that was on purpose. Overall, it wasn't awful, but I didn't laugh that much, either. If you really, really like Jack Black, then you can probably tolerate this movie. The story made sense and had a little bit more depth than I was expecting. But it was silly, and if you have no tolerance for silliness, then stay away!

I am, however, looking forward to Jack's next movie, Be Kind, Rewind:

- e

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