As Hollywood continues to scrape the bottom of the barrel for ideas, good sports movies remain uncommon. Here are a few that may have never achieved mainstream popularity, but still deliver the inspiring stories, captivating drama and unrelenting comedy that audiences crave from sports movies.
“Trouble with the Curve” (2012)
Clint Eastwood, Amy Adams and Justin Timberlake lead in a heartwarming story about an aging MLB scout (Eastwood) and his daughter (Adams) who journey to find the next big star somewhere in the midst of college baseball. The film tells an engaging and cohesive tale about the process of rebuilding familial bonds as well as the woes of arrogance and cockiness in the world of sports. “Trouble with the Curve” is available for streaming on Hulu.
The placement of Benchwarmers on this list may be largely due to nostalgia, but this movie holds up as a classic sports film. Comedic legends of the early 2000’s David Spade, Jon Heder and Rob Schneider lead this comedy about three unlikely nobodies who band together to prove their bullies wrong about the importance of having fun over winning. Of course, the film’s hilarity and message renders this movie a classic. “Benchwarmers” is available for streaming on Hulu.
Who doesn’t love a good underdog story? This film tells the true tale of Vince Papale, played by Mark Wahlberg, a 30-year-old bartender in Philadelphia that finds his life turned upside down after he lands a spot on the Philadelphia Eagles NFL roster. “Invincible” tells a captivating story of how quickly someone’s life could change, but it is also a well-made film in general with impressive production, cinematography and acting. “Invincible” is available for streaming on Disney+.
“The Game Plan” (2007)
Although I didn’t intend on this list leaning in the PG direction, this movie offers a wholesome message and stars Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as the quarterback of a fictional NFL team. In the movie, a young girl, played by Madison Pettis, shows up to his penthouse door, claiming to be his long lost daughter. Suddenly, the quarterback finds himself having to balance fatherhood and the face of his franchise. “The Game Plan” is available for streaming on Disney+.
“Kicking and Screaming” (2005)
As a chaotic comedy, this movie is a shining example of how hilarious sports films can be. Comedy legend Will Ferrell starts in this film as the coach for his son’s soccer team as the means of obtaining bragging rights over his own arrogant father. However, he soon discovers that he may be more similar to his father than he thought. “Kicking and Screaming” is available for streaming on Hulu.