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Drama

‘Maradona Sueño Bendito’ (2021) sex, more sex, drugs and fútbol

Maradona Blessed Dream, the 10-episode series from Amazon, may hook you in its steady outpouring of sex, drugs and fútbol. It will probably be the grandest film/series about Diego Armando Maradona that will ever be made. But if I hadn’t felt compelled to review it, I would have preferred to turn it off. It just feels so distasteful and disrespectful. Do we really want to remember Maradona by the depictions of his nightlife, copulations and orgies?

Categories
Drama

‘Maradona: the hand of God’ (2007) in under 2 hours

Right now, Amazon is showing Season 1 of Maradona Sueno Bendito, a 10-episode compilation of “sex, drugs, and historic goals”. While waiting for that serie’s episodes to appear, I supplemented my viewing with this similarly-themed feature film, which was produced in Italy and released in 2007.

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Drama

‘The International Player’ (2009) entertaining Egyptian drama

The International Player kicks off with a somewhat familiar scene — a celebrity leaves a night club accompanied by 2 women who are ready to party. The man drives fast and recklessly, until he crashes his Porsche convertible into a concrete wall. From his hospital bed, the film looks backward to see how the player Malek (Youssef El Sherif) came to this point of possible suicide right before a World Cup qualifier.

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Drama Kids

‘Cool Kids Don’t Cry’ (2012) is a better Eighth Grade

Cool Kids Don’t Cry is a hopeful and touching film about a vibrant eighth grade girl who contracts leukemia, and how she and her classmates respond to her illness as it progresses.

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Drama

‘Soccer Mom Madam’ (2021) is not a soccer movie

First of all, let’s set the record straight. Soccer Mom Madam is not a soccer movie. But its provocative title is going to occupy any search for the keywords “soccer mom movie”, so I am posting this review as a public service to soccer fans. 🙂

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Drama Suspense

‘Champion’ (2019) – the 2nd best Indian soccer drama

Released just 2 months after Bigil, one might write off Champion as a literal poor man’s version of that big budget production. Champion‘s star (Vishwa K as Jones) is an unknown newcomer, there are no dance scenes or music videos, and there is no CGI. Both films relate to criminal life in the slums, but the 2 films don’t really compare.

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Drama

‘Baggio: The Divine Ponytail’ (2021) – GOAT or goat?

When creating a biopic about a footballer, who you claim to be one of the best that ever played, the rule is that the film must have some football in it. At least have enough soccer to show the viewer that the player’s greatness cannot be denied.

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Drama

‘A Barefoot Dream’ (2010) a Korean in East Timor

In the drama A Barefoot Dream, Kim Won-kang is a  former youth national team footballer for South Korea. In adulthood, he has never succeeded in anything, losing his own money and that of family and friends. He heads to the newly independent country of Timor-Leste (East Timor) to get rich quick and redeem his reputation, but the money doesn’t materialize, and his real redemption comes from the change he effects within himself and others.

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Drama Suspense

‘Sikandar’ (2009) and terrorism in Kashmir

Sikandar opens with the activities of a small Muslim village in a beautiful mountainous setting. As school lets out, children stream downhill to the market plaza. A child spies a loose soccer ball, kicks it, and it explodes, blowing apart everything and everyone in the plaza. Welcome to routine life in Kashmir.

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Drama Kids

I’m no fan of ‘Fan of Amoory’ (2018)

The most charitable description of Fan of Amoory is that it is well-meaning propaganda meant to exhort young boys to follow their dreams and work for them. In the glory of the UAE.

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Drama

‘Penalty’ (2019) a well-meaning film that stereotypes

Penalty is a well-meaning but mostly flaccid first feature film from Director Shubham Singh. Singh uses football as a vehicle to weave a narrative about discrimination in northern India.

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Drama

‘Adidas vs Puma’ (2016) – How the feud began

Duell der Brüder is a welcome entry in my list of football films. Titled Adidas vs Puma for Amazon, it covers a small but significant piece of sports history along with the drama of two brothers turned personal and business enemies amid the effects of World War 2.

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Drama Suspense

Football frames ’90 Minutos’ (2020) of life in Honduras

90 Minutos is an excellent first feature from Pulsar, a young Honduran filmmaking company. Director Aeden O’Connor Agurcia and Writer Daniel Frañó fused 4 disparate stories from Honduran life, each with a connection to football. But soccer is mainly a vehicle to capture movie-goers’ attention in a futbol-crazy country.

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Drama Kids

‘The Goal’ is social justice + football in 1999

Gulbahar Singh is a director who wants to make feature films on humanity, and The Goal (द गोल) is an unusual football drama in that its coach decides that overcoming prejudice is more important than winning.

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Drama

Daisy Shah a reason to watch ‘Gujarat 11’ (2019)

Gujarat 11 is promoted as the first Gujarati sports film and stars popular and handsome Gujarati actors Daisy Shah and Pratik Gandhi. The story mixes in a number of themes, but while each theme has good points, they are not enough to forgive 2 hours and 20 minutes of banality.