The Soccer Football Movie needs a big red alert that warns “Not Suitable for Small Children”. Followed by a second warning that says “Indigestible for Adults”.
It’s a very weird story. Weird Al Yankovic is the villain, who wants to become the best footballer in the world by stealing the powers of the greatest players, in this case, Zlatan Ibrahimović and Megan Rapinoe. Weird Al does the steal by inventing a lime green fluorescent slug that invades the players’ bodies, turning them into mutants that look like Spiderman’s Green Goblin.
Mutant Rapinoe is especially ferocious and frightening, which is why I dare not show this film to my 4 and 7 year old granddaughters. Zlatan is a little less scary-looking, but his powers are concentrated in his ponytail, which comes alive like a talking snake, and which Weird Al slashes off with a bone saw. It’s like a cartoon horror movie.
Before he mutates, Zlatan befriends 4 soccer-loving kids who are Creature Catchers. They eventually excise the slimey slugs from the players via Ghostbuster-like equipment and whoopee cushions (I kid you not). And of course, they join the pro players in the big All Star game.
Rob Stone narrates the action but I guess first-feature Director Mitch Schauer didn’t like him, because Rob’s final scene has a bloody nose plug hanging from his face.
In short, most of the film is an embarrassment to its soccer-related stars and to Netflix. The only reason I don’t give this film the lowest score possible is because early on, it has a cute footy juggling competition between Zlatan and one of the girls. It’s all downhill from there.
Edit on Nov-13-2022
I found an interview of the writer Deeki Deke, where he revealed that he was asked to pitch this idea in 2018, the film was shot during the pandemic with just a $5M budget, and the animation was by L’Atelier Animation in Canada.
What’s on Netflix: You’ve mentioned publicly that Netflix hasn’t given your movie much promo ahead of time – can you speculate why that is? Has Netflix talked to you in advance that there wouldn’t be much?
I don’t think they know what to do with the horror-comedy part – they seem very comfortable showing the “wish fulfillment” scenes of the kids meeting their idols, but if you watch it, their idols are actually trying to kill them! So it was disheartening that they didn’t want to lean into the weirder, scarier, more interesting elements for promotion.
But I get it – Netflix has a lot of stuff on their service to promote and marketing an original horror-comedy for kids does present challenges.Kasey Moore, What’s on Netflix, Nov-10-2022
Netflix’s perspective on the film seems pretty similar to my review.
3 Soccer Movie Mom Rating = 3