Categories
Documentary

‘Iron Men’ (2017) – it ain’t the stadium, it’s the people

Iron Men (2017)

People will travel to see something unique: centuries old castles and cathedrals, or even an old football stadium with 100 years of tradition and raucous, rabid, singing West Ham fans. Iron Men brings us the story of these fans, whose club moved from their 104 year old Boleyn Ground to the former Olympic Stadium.

Categories
Documentary

‘Argentina Fútbol Club’ (2010) es soporific

Argentina Fútbol Club (2010)

I had trouble understanding the title of Argentina Fútbol Club. This is not the name of an actual club, and the documentary describes itself as a brief chronicle of the rivalry between Argentine clubs Boca and River Plate.

Categories
Documentary

When Wichita was hopping – ‘God Save the Wings’ (2020)

God Save the Wings (2020)

Very good things can come out of obsessive fan behavior*. …such as this feature length documentary, God Save the Wings. Producer and life-long Wings fan Michael Romalis took his 40 year old collection of memorabilia, facts, and videos, and with co-producer and fellow fan Timothy O’Bryhim wrote a book and then made a movie.

Categories
Documentary

2015 film shows Bari eat bread and football

Una Meravigliosa Stagione Fallimentare (2015)
aka A Wonderful Season of Failure

In his 2015 docufilm Una Meravigliosa Stagione Fallimentare, Director Mario Bucci creates a remarkable homage to his home club, located in the city of Bari on the southeast coast of Italy. The charm of this film comes from the innocent appeal of the players. There are also the tongue-in-cheek presentations of the kit men and the people who pull the strings. And, you are buoyed by the fans, the city, and its people as enthusiasm builds behind a team that should be hopeless.

It all makes an uplifting story of a team and a movement that create joy from bankruptcy and A Wonderful Season of Failure (the English title).

Categories
Comedy

The Supporters are the best part of ’The Bromley Boys’ (2018)

The Bromley Boys (2018)

As an American, I sometimes have a terrible time understanding British humor. The Bromley Boys is one such case. Which in this year of 2020 is quite sad, because I really need cheering up.** Having enjoyed the youtube series Seaside Town by Warren Dudley, I expected his screenplay for The Bromley Boys to be equally fun.

Categories
Documentary Short

‘Muerte o Gloria: The Rise of the American Soccer Fan’ (2015)

Muerte o Gloria: The Rise of the American Soccer Fan (2015)

As a soccer fan who rarely watches any other sport these days, I tend to forget that basketball, baseball and pointy football don’t have fans like soccer football does. Following the European and Latin American traditions, soccer is the only pro sport in the USA where, pre-pandemic, supporters groups show up with songs, drums, banners, flags, TIFOs and a s**tload of enthusiasm.

Categories
Documentary

Sunderland ’Til I Die (2018) takes your eye off the truth

Sunderland 'Til I Die (2018-2019)

Football clubs used to publish just a single documentary film about themselves every so often, but now they’ve migrated to massive streaming series. Usually I avoid football club and player movies because I know they are going to amount to a very long marketing video. I made an exception for the Netflix series Sunderland ’Til I Die. And here’s why.

Categories
Documentary

Derby Days Berlin (2019) will make you a fan

Copa90 Stories logo

You might expect that as a reviewer of soccer movies, I would be well aware of COPA90, a company that claims to be “The world’s largest independent football media business”, delivering stories on “football like you’ve never seen it before”. I knew the name, but I hadn’t looked at their content until I watched Derby Days Berlin, an episode of their Copa90 Stories youtube channel. 

Categories
Documentary

Is ‘River Plate the Greatest Ever’ (2019) ?

River, El Más Grande Siempre (2019)

River, El Más Grande Siempre (translation: River, the Greatest Ever) is a 2019 documentary about Club Atlético River Plate in Argentina. It covers the players, the club’s idols, some of its 35 championships, the history, the style of soccer, and the fans.

Categories
Cultural Documentary

‘Looking for…’ fanatic football fans (2010-2015)

Looking for Barcelona (2012)

Post-football, Eric Cantona found a new passion and challenge: cinema. At 30 years old, he unexpectedly retired from football in 1997. Among reasons Eric has cited in retrospect: he was tired of playing the game. However, he transitioned to acting as well as beach soccer, popularizing the sport and managing the French beach soccer team for almost 15 years.

Categories
Documentary

‘American Fútbol’ (2018) – what a way to go to a World Cup

American Fútbol (2018)

American Fútbol is like a playful combination of Anthony Bourdain style and Pelada, sampling the food, absorbing a little culture and history, and playing pickup soccer with fans in 8 countries. In 2014, two young men, Directors Peter Karl and Sam Mathius, set out to cover the fan experience from Mexico to WC 2014 in Brazil—7,000 miles by way of Costa Rica, Colombia, Ecuador, Chile, Argentina, and Uruguay.

Categories
Notes

Without Fans, There Would be No Sports Heroes

San Jose Ultras CAzdrakUgAAeBEC

American owners of sports teams tend to forget that,

Without fans and supporters, there would be no sports heroes.

Categories
Comedy

‘One Night in Istanbul’ (2014) – another funny film about LFC

One Night in Istanbul (2014)

Many congratulations to Liverpool FC and their fans for making it back to the Champions League Final in 2018. It makes a great time to enjoy football feature films about Liverpool FC: Reds and Blues, Will, Hillsborough, and now, One Night in Istanbul. There are more I haven’t seen!

Categories
Documentary

[Review] ‘Save The Crew: The Fans vs The System’ (2017)

Save The Crew (2017)

If they give an Oscar for brilliant documentary made under incredible time pressure, Save the Crew: The Fans vs the System wins hands down. It starts with the first #SaveTheCrew rally:

Morgan Hughes: “This is not over! If you came here for a funeral, you’re in the wrong place!”
Crowd chants: “We’re not done yet! We’re not done yet!”

Categories
Cultural Documentary

Turkish fans under oppression in ‘Ayaktakimi’ (2015)

Ayaktakimi (2015)

In Turkey, Supporters Groups are the real fans, and everyone else is just a spectator. Filmmakers Naz Gündogdu and Friedemann Pitschak have documented a life that Americans have not yet experienced: being a fan in the face of political oppression.