How is your ideal week in the office? Is it full of ups and downs, wins and losses, a touch of tough lessons, some pleasant victories, all in all, a little emotionally and mentally exhilarating? Well, for us, sports movies are a lot like a week at work. And this week, on our #BingeChronicle series, we are here to suggest you binge on some of the greatest sports movies over the weekend.
Why binge on emotional roller coaster movies on a relaxing weekend, you ask? So, the greatest recipe that works for almost all movies in this sub-genre is that there is usually an underdog who works extra hard to make it happen for them and in most films they do. After a great struggle, there is usually a great success. Even if some movies may not have a happy ending and the protagonist may not win it all, the journey of a sportsperson is nothing less than inspiring in real life. These movies, irrespective of their conclusion are extremely motivating, and isn’t that something we look for before we reach Monday and go through life again?
Here is your weekend fix of all the motivation you need for the coming week!
Ford v Ferrari
It’s one of those uplifting movies that narrate a story of two childhood friends who win against all odds while helping each other grow personally. The film is about an American car designer Carroll Shelby (a former winner of Le Mans 1959) and his childhood bud Ken Miles, a struggling but brilliant mechanic and driver. It’s about a revolutionary car race where the front runners are Ford and Ferrari. This is one of the best underdog stories to get inspired from and to top it all it's based on a true story!
This is what David Sims wrote in his review for the film, “Ford v Ferrari takes the straightforward ethos of car racing-where the winner is whoever is the fastest-and lays bare the egotism and greed required for such a triumph.”
IMDb rating: 8.1
Director: James Mangold
Starring: Matt Damon, Christian Bale, and Jon Bernthal, among others
Where to watch: Disney+ Hotstar
If you are a Bollywood buff like us, you may remember a movie called Brothers starring Akshay Kumar and Sidharth Malhotra in the lead. Well, the Hindi movie was an official remake of Gavin O'Connor’s Warrior. The movie is about two estranged brothers who take up boxing for one or another reason and are eventually pitched against each other. The Oscar-nominated movie is a beautiful family film but slightly edges on the modern-day version of Cain and Abel!
Appreciating the director, Peter Travers wrote reviewing the movie, “Director Gavin O'Connor comes out swinging in this flawed but fiercely moving family drama...Strong stuff.”
IMDb rating: 8.1
Director: Gavin O'Connor
Starring: Tom Hardy, Nick Nolte, Joel Edgerton and Jennifer Morrison, among others
Where to watch: YouTube
Million Dollar Baby
This Academy winner film is all about underdogs. The movie is about an extremely talented and determined woman who trains with an underappreciated hardened boxing trainer to become a pro. The movie inspires you to look out for your colleagues and friends who’ve always got your back.
This is what Joe Morgenstern wrote while reviewing this movie, “It is thoughtful, unfashionable, measured, mostly honest, sometimes clumsy or remote, often exciting, occasionally moving and eventually surprising. It's correct.”
IMDb rating: 8.1
Director: Clint Eastwood
Starring: Hilary Swank, Clint Eastwood, Morgan Freeman and Mike Colter, among others
Where to watch: Amazon Prime Videos
Sudani from Nigeria
With a lot of great stories and a better social approach, regional cinema is no longer limited to the ‘region’ so to say. Many movies made in Indian vernacular languages have made a mark on International platforms and Sudani from Nigeria, according to us, is one such film. This Malayalam movie is about a new but strong friendship between an African football player and a local football club manager from Malappuram, Kerala.
Here’s what Baradwaj Rangan said about the film in his review for Film Companion, “The film is a heart-warming celebration of humanity, but not in the overblown, vulgar, “triumph of the spirit” mode that Hollywood specialises in.” This movie is a must-watch for those who doubt every decision in their lives. Since this movie can and may inspire you to take more chances!
IMDb rating: 8.2
Director: Zakariya Mohammed
Starring: Soubin Shahir, Samuel Abiola Robinson, Aneesh Menon and Sarasa Balussery, among others
Where to watch: Netflix, YouTube, Google Play
The movie is based on a real-life story. It’s about Billy Beane, general manager of the Oakland Athletics (for the unversed, it’s a baseball team) and his journey to assembling a relatively new team for 2002 with a limited budget. Now that’s a movie to be watched by those who lead. Through this movie, you may get answers to questions like - How to get a team together? How to win on a low budget? And yes, the movie has Brad Pitt (have we told you, we love him?).
If you don’t believe us about the brilliance of the movie, trust Peter Bradshaw, who said that Moneyball “puts a funky kind of Gladwellian-Freakonomic spin on the underdog sports movie, and is an engaging, intelligent film.”
IMDb rating: 7.6
Director: Bennett Miller
Starring: Brad Pitt, Robin Wright, Jonah Hill and Chris Pratt, among others
Where to watch: Netflix, YouTube Play
Hope you have a happy and inspiring weekend!