New List Suggestion - The Athletic's top 100 sport movies

Hi everyone,

I like watching sports and watching movies. I can’t watch sports right now with the COVID situation, so I want to watch movies about sports.

The Athletic is a well respected and influential online sports information resource. They must also be going crazy without any new sports to report on and released a Top 100 Sports Movies list on March 31.


Unfortunately the link is paywalled but if there is interest I can list out the movies if need be.

Currently there is only 1 sports movie list, and this list is more catered to what movies sports fans will watch, rather than just pulling the top IMDB scores. I would love this list to become official.

Let me know what you think

2 Likes
List of the movies in order. Apologies for poor formatting
  1. Rocky (1976)

  2. Raging Bull (1980)

  3. Hoop Dreams (1994)

  4. Bull Durham (1988)

  5. Miracle (2004)

  6. The Big Lebowski (1998)

  7. Breaking Away (1979)

  8. O.J.: Made in America (2016)

  9. When We Were Kings (1996)

10 Major League (1989)

11 The Sandlot (1993)

12 Free Solo (2018)

13 Caddyshack (1980)

14 The Hustler (1961)

15 Hoosiers (1986)

16 Slap Shot (1977)

17 Senna (2011)

18 Icarus (2017)

19 The Bad News Bears (1976)

20 A League of Their Own (1992)

21 Field of Dreams (1989)

22 Sugar (2008)

23 White Men Can’t Jump (1992)

24 The Wrestler (2008)

25 Moneyball (2011)

26 Remember the Titans (2000)

27 Ford v Ferrari (2019)

28 Creed (2015)

29 Friday Night Lights (2004)

30 The Karate Kid (1984)

31 The Natural (1984)

32 Dear Basketball (2017)

33 Rocky II (1979)

34 The Boxer (1998)

35 Million Dollar Baby (2004)

36 The Color of Money (1986)

37 Win Win (2011)

38 Fighting with my Family (2019)

39 Searching for Bobby Fischer (1993)

40 Bang the Drum Slowly (1973)

41 I, Tonya (2017)

42 Jerry Mcguire (1996)

43 The Fighter (2010)

44 The Damned United (2009)

45 North Dallas Forty (1979)

46 The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars & Motor Kings (1976)

47 Everybody Wants Some!! (2016)

48 He Got Game (1998)

49 Foxcatcher (2014)

50 Uncut Gems (2019)

51 Rounders (1998)

52 The Longest Yard (1974)

53 Eight Men Out (1988)

54 Kingpin (1996)

55 Happy Gilmore (1996)

56 Murderball (2005)

57 Warrior (2011)

58 Cinderella Man (2005)

59 The Hurricane (1999)

60 The Mighty Ducks (1992)

61 Rush (2013)

62 Rocky III (1982)

63 Prefontaine (1997)

64 Vision Quest (1985)

65 Rocky IV (1985)

66 Chariots of Fire (1981)

67 Big Fan (2009)

68 Dogtown and Z-Boys (2001)

69 Creed II (2018)

70 Seabiscuit (2003)

71 Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (2004)

72 Invictus (2009)

73 Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (2006)

74 Bend It Like Beckham (2002)

75 The Endless Summer (1966)

76 Rudy (1993)

77 McFarland, USA (2015)

78 Pumping Iron (1977)

79 Race (2016)

80 Love & Basketball (2000)

81 The Rookie (2002)

82 Glory Road (2006)

83 A River Runs Through It (1992)

84 Cool Runnings (1993)

85 We Are Marshall (2006)

86 Tin Cup (1996)

87 Blue Chips (1994)

88 Wildcats (1986)

89 Space Jam (1996)

90 Heaven Can Wait (1978)

91 Paper Lion (1968)

92 Youngblood (1986)

93 Secretariat (2010)

94 Mystery, Alaska (1999)

95 Bloodsport (1988)

96 Beyond the Mat (1999)

97 Above the Rim (1994)

98 Varsity Blues (1999)

99 Ali (2001)

100 The Pride of the Yankees (1942)

1 Like

A sports movie list is something we’ve discussed off and on but never found a list that was remotely suitable.

That one looks like it’s at least worth considering. I’ll put it up on ICM.

Edit: Pride of The Yankees being the only pre 1960 movie is a bit disappointing, but other than the recency bias (and US bias but that’s expected) it’s not bad.
https://www.icheckmovies.com/lists/the+athletics+top+100+sports+movies/peacefulanarchy/

3 Likes

Could you post the intro?
All I can see through the paywall is

I’d like to know a bit more about the process.

First, we asked everyone on staff to nominate their favorite sports movies. This list quickly got unwieldy. Within days, it was 300 movies deep. It included movies people desperately wanted on the ballot where the only sport was, say, guys in jeans playing beach volleyball. Even with extra time on our hands, we didn’t want people rating 500 movies. So we made some rules.

To be considered, a movie had to be released in theaters at some point. That removed some really good television-only sports movies. (We’re looking at you “Brian’s Song” and “61*”.) For documentaries to make the final ballot, the doc had to be released in theaters (no TV docs) and be at least nominated for an Oscar; or added to the Library of Congress’ National Film Registry; or make at least $1M at the box office; or be culturally significant. Finally, with a small panel of movie enthusiasts, we culled the list to make individual calls on borderline sports movies. Is “The Big Lebowski” really a sports movie? When things got tough, they went bowling. So we think it is. But there’s a good debate to be had about many others.

Next, we asked everyone to rate as many movies as they’ve seen on a scale of 1-100, with 100 being best. You could give Rocky a 100 as well as Space Jam, if you so pleased. And why wouldn’t you?

In all, more than 120 panelists from The Athletic voted. The ratings were averaged out and sorted into the Top 100 below. To qualify for the final list, a movie needed at least 10 ratings from panelists.

We hope it gives some entertainment inspiration for any extra spare time you might have. And it’s just the start. All week, we’re rolling out sports movie-themed stories. From a technical breakdown of Adam Sandler’s tackling skills in “The Waterboy” to an oral history of the best dog basketball movie ever made. It’s going to be fun. We hope you enjoy.

Grab your popcorn. Here goes."

Then it goes on to describe the movies.

Thanks. Sounds like a reasonable enough process to be worthy of consideration.

Yes, thanks for sharing the list and intro, @Couchfighter - interesting list!

That’s a pretty good list, has documentaries and even a short on there (“Dear Basketball”). Nice to see “Sugar” on there, very underrated. Surprised “Any Given Sunday” isn’t on there.