High school football hero Steve Novak finds himself caught up in the world of big-time college athletics at Jackson University in the 1950’s. He must balance his desire to get an education with the high expectations of his coach and “benefactor,” by whose grace he is attending Jackson. Still applicable today, the movie shows that the problems of college athletics are not just a new phenomenon.
The Cannonball Run (1981) Hal Needham, Burt Reynolds, Roger Moore, Farrah Fawcett, Action, Comedy, Sport
This comedy film brings Burt Reynolds, Roger Moore, Farrah Fawcett, Dom DeLuise, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr. and an all-star cast to the starting line of the ultimate auto race, a madcap cross-country scramble that roars full-speed ahead. This action-comedy was inspired by an actual event: the Cannonball Baker Sea-To-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash, an anything goes, all-stops-out – and very much illegal – competition that has grown to legendary proportions within the last ten years.
Black Gold (1947) Phil Karlson, Anthony Quinn, Katherine DeMille, ‘Ducky’ Louie, Drama, History, Sport
In the early 1920s, in the desert near the Texas-Mexico border, Charley Eagle (Anthony Quinn), is Indian who owns a small, hardscrabble ranch and is training a horse, “Black Hope,”. He thinks that the horse is capable of running in, and winning, the Kentucky Derby. Charley runs into a young Chinese boy, David Chung (‘Ducky’ Louie), whose father has been killed by a smuggling gang, while pretending to help him enter the United States illegally. Charlie takes the young boy back to his small ranch, where Charley and his wife, Sarah (Katherine DeMille) adopt him. His plans for “Black Hope” go awry but oil is discovered on his land and this intensifies his dreams that “Black Gold” (Highland Dale,) the colt of “Black Hope” can do what his sire couldn’t do. The end frame of the film reads:”Suggested by the winning of the 1924 Kentucky Derby by the horse “Black Gold.”
Frank Capua is a rising star on the race circuit who dreams of winning the big one–the Indianapolis 500. But to get there he runs the risk of losing his wife Elora to his rival, Luther Erding, and strains the relationship with his stepson.
Muhammad Ali stars as himself in this dramatised version of his life story up to the late 1970s. It includes his Olympic triumphs as Cassius Clay, his conversion to Islam, his refusal of the Army draft and the legal battle after being stripped of his World Title.
Down Argentine Way (1940) Irving Cummings, Don Ameche, Betty Grable, Carmen Miranda, Comedy, Drama, Musical, Romance, Sport
Hollywood’s handful of Technicolor cameras got a real workout on 20th Century-Fox’s Down Argentine Way. Don Ameche stars as Ricardo Quintana, the charming son of a less charming Argentine horse breeder (Henry Stephenson). Betty Grable is vacationing American heiress Glenda Crawford, who “collects” horses as a hobby. Separated by a family feud, Ricard and Glenda must endure all sorts of setbacks and misunderstandings before crossing the romantic finish line. Filmed on location, Down Argentine Way served to introduce Brazilian bombshell Carmen Miranda, performing a variety of sizzling South American numbers with her own band. Also on hand are the Nicholas Brothers, whose show-stopping dance number has been spotlighted innumerable times in various “best of Hollywood musicals” compilations.
Chariots of Fire (1981) Hugh Hudson, Ben Cross, Ian Charleson, Nicholas Farrell, Biography, Drama, Sport
In the class-obsessed and religiously divided United Kingdom of the early 1920s, two determined young runners train for the 1924 Paris Olympics. Eric Liddell (Ian Charleson), a devout Christian born to Scottish missionaries in China, sees running as part of his worship of God’s glory and refuses to train or compete on the Sabbath. Harold Abrahams (Ben Cross) overcomes anti-Semitism and class bias, but neglects his beloved sweetheart Sybil (Alice Krige) in his single-minded quest.
During the Great Depression, Chaney (Charles Bronson) bare-knuckle boxes to survive. Speed (James Coburn), an avid gambler, recognizes his talent and becomes his manager. They hire a cut man named Poe (Strother Martin), and Speed borrows cash from some gangsters to bet on Chaney’s fight. They win, but Speed gambles and loses his portion and remains in debt. In the end, a rival manager named Gandil (Michael McGuire) buys Speed’s debt and forces Chaney to fight Speed against his toughest foe yet.
In Durham, N.C., the Bulls minor league baseball team has one asset no other can claim: a poetry-loving groupie named Annie Savoy (Susan Sarandon). As the team’s season begins, Annie selects brash new recruit Ebby Calvin Laloosh (Tim Robbins), whom she christens “Nuke,” to inspire with the religion of baseball. Nuke also receives guidance from veteran player Crash Davis (Kevin Costner), who settles Nuke’s erratic pitching and teaches him to follow the catcher’s lead.
Muhammad Ali, the Greatest (1969) William Klein, Muhammad Ali, Sonny Liston, Angelo Dundee, Documentary, Sport
He’s the greatest fighter of all time. A sports icon that is loved throughout the world. A man driven by his ambition to be the best. Muhammad Ali is a name that to this day puts fear in the strongest of men. Hear from the people who knew him best, from experts of the world of boxing, relive the legendary fights and explore the life of boxing’s greatest symbol, Ali.