Ahhh, how many more days until the MLS season starts!? The EPL can sustain for only so long. So what does the average American soccer fan do to pass the time until March 10? How do you get your fix? Well, I find solace in the wonderful world of cinema, specifically soccer movies. While they may not be as heart-stopping as a Geoff Cameron tackle or a strike from Edson Buddle, they will help these next 20 or so days go by more quickly.
Now, there is a big difference between the “best” movies and one’s “favorite” movies. That being said, here are my top 10 “favorite” soccer-themed movies.
1. The Damned United
Depending on who you are you may leave this movie thinking he is either extremely confident or completely unsure of himself. Great acting, story, characters, production, and soccer. What else can you ask for?
2. Goal!: The Dream Begins
Aside from Ladybugs and The Big Green, this is the first soccer movie I ever watched. We follow a young Santiago Munez’s journey from a humble life in Southern California to the fast past world of the EPL.
While the trilogy seems to go downhill after the first movie, Goal! is fantastic. It’s a great underdog story and all the Oasis songs make for an enjoyable soundtrack as well.
3. The Game Of Their Lives
In 1950, the United States beat England 1-0 in the World Cup. What? You want more reasons to watch this movie? Aside from a great plot, you get very solid performances from Gerard Butler and the entire cast.
Unfortunately, I can’t help but have Glycerine playing in my head every time Gavin Rossdale appears on the screen. Oh well, it’s just a small price to pay for a great movie.
4. Once In a Lifetime: The Extraordinary Story of the New York Cosmos
Many say that at that point the NASL was in the golden age of soccer in America. What will it take for MLS to reach that point, does MLS even want to reach that point, or is MLS already there? Look what happened to the NASL.
5. Rise and Shine: The Jay Demerit Story
Unless you hate the Whitecaps, DeMerit is one of those players you can’t help but love. I’m sure you’ll feel the same way about this movie.
6. Fever Pitch
If you have ever been accused of obsessing over soccer too much, this is the movie for you.
7. Green Street Hooligans
This movie is great when you’re looking for a bit more violence in your soccer movie.
9. Kicking It
This documentary is compelling enough that I can even look past Colin Farrell narrating it.
If you have ever played the beautiful game and dreamed of playing professionally, then you will enjoy this movie. The documentary follows a young couple traveling across the globe to see how people still enjoy playing just for the love of the game. At the same time, the two of them come to terms with the end of their own careers.