We all have our favourite sports movies. But it’s fair to say that there’s a lot that Hollywood ultimately gets wrong about our favourite sports. That’s why documentaries like The Last Dance feel like such a breath of fresh air. It provides an honest perspective of the game.
So, let’s run down some of the common issues that crop up in sports movies time and time again.
Where is the Officiating?
Specifically, you’ll notice this in basketball games. Avid fans of b-ball will know that actual games are filled with examples of officiating. The games are constantly stopped for foul calls.
This doesn’t happen on the silver screen. Instead, the game runs smoothly. A foul call will only be called to give a “hero” player the chance to make a winning throw or potentially to build tension. It does make the whole experience more cinematic but it’s annoying for those who know the sport.
We’ve Got Serious Trouble Coach
Often, the drama will be added into sports films. There are numerous ways that you can do this but one of the key steps taken by Hollywood producers is to ensure that the personal lives of the players and even the coach start to impact their performance.
The problem is that this would never happen and if it did that coach would quickly be fired and released from their contract. Sports movies often fail to address the massive corporate ladder surrounding sports teams.
A smart example of this can be found in the Apple+ TV show, Ted Lasso.
Those Final Seconds
You might think that the final seconds of a sports film will always play in real-time.
This hardly ever happens and again, it’s because it’s not cinematic. The director needs a little more time to build up the tension, particularly with the “will they won’t they” make the final shot scene.
If you have watched a sports movie recently, you might just find that 3 seconds in their time becomes three minutes in ours. A great film will have you on the edge of your seat so you won’t notice unless you’re paying attention.
Finally, you tend to have training montages in sports movies. Often, players will go through crazy physical challenges to get ready for a match or tournament.
Sports performance counselling online and other support options for players are becoming far more common. They help ensure that players are ready to take on the pressures of the game and perform at the right level. Players are often overseen by experts.
I hope this helps you see that there are a lot of mistakes, even in your favourite sports films.
A final one to consider would be physics. Sports films don’t always play by the laws of physics.
While I can’t expect them to be one hundred percent accurate, producers would do well to try a little harder when getting the key details right with their sports movies.