Top 10 Sports Movies of the 90′s

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Top 10 Sports Movies of the 90's

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There were quite a few sports movies that came out in the 90’s but which ones were the best? Two main topics can arise from these sports movies, ones that are dramatic and then there the movies that are based off of true stories.

By taking movies from each category, I created the ultimate top 10 list of 90’s sports movies. If you haven’t seen them, then you’re out of luck; go to the movie store and find them because you’re missing out on some of the best sports movies that have ever been filmed.

As a kid, I was a big fan of Space Jam and The Little Rascals, but looking back on it now, I realize there are more to sports than a good soundtrack and neighborhood baseball games. The top sports movies of the 90’s have more to them than just celebrities and good music.

Not one sport in particular rules the top ten; you find everything from the classic American baseball, all the way to ones that are not so popular such as hockey and golf. In the end, all of them have a moral or a story of success, which makes them some of the best movies out there.

These movies are not all ones that won academy awards but they are the ones that you can watch over and over again and they never get old. Their genres range from dramatic, to comedic, and even the occasional romance gets involved but best of all, they are all inspirational in their own unique way.

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10. Angels in The Outfield (1994)


Orphan child Roger, and his friend J.P. are always sneaking into California Angels baseball games, even though the team was horrible. Still being in contact with his father, Roger asked him if they’d ever be a family again. His dad sarcastically said they would when the Angels win the pennant. Not realizing the sarcasm, Roger prays for the Angels to win the pennant just as a shooting star is going by.

Then out of nowhere, when Roger was at one of the games, he sees angels helping out the team. Sure enough, they start winning and end up at the top of the division. Unfortunately for Roger, his father gives up full-custody. When Roger admits that he sees the angels, the media uproars and the team manager, George Knox faces termination. At the Championship game, none of the Angels show up but the Angels pull it off and George adopts Roger and J.P.

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9. Tin Cup (1996)

tin cup

Kevin Costner stars as washed-up professional golfer, Roy “Tin Cup” McAvoy that owns a driving range in Texas. Dr. Molly Griswold asked Roy for a golf lesson after her boyfriend, David Simms referenced that he knew Roy. When Simms later shows up at Roy’s trailer, Roy thinks Simms is going to offer him a spot to play in an invitational but in reality he just wanted Roy to be his caddy.

During the invitational, the two bicker back and forth about a shot over a water hazard. Roy won the battle after proving he could successfully hit it over the hazard and Simms fired him. To get back, Roy attempts to qualify for the U.S. Open and makes a play for Molly by becoming her patient. Molly convinces Roy to become serious about golf again. It turns into a love story and Roy qualifying for the U.S. Open but he also makes it interesting by scoring a 12 on the final hole in the qualifying round

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8. The Mighty Ducks (1992)


Attorney Gordon Bombay is pulled over for drunk driving and sentenced to community service to coach a hockey team. He gets stuck with District 5, the team at the bottom of the league every year. The kids learn that Bombay was once an elite hockey player that quit because of embarrassment after missing a penalty shot.

He teaches the kids the basic fundamentals and manages to get them to the playoffs and the team becomes the Ducks, named after Bombay's employer. In the finals, the team faces Bombay’s former team, the Hawks. Ironically, they win the championship on a penalty shot, the same play Bombay had missed back in his hockey days.

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7. The Hurricane (1999)


Rubin “Hurricane” Carter was top-ranked middleweight boxer when he was wrongfully convicted with murder in 1966 after 3 people were shot to death at a bar in New Jersey. The future world champion was sentenced with 3 consecutive life sentences. In 1980, an underprivileged teen became more interested in his case; a group came together to push the state to reinvestigate the case.

In 1986, a Federal District Court ruled that the prosecution was originally based on racism rather than facts and Carter was freed. Controversy still lies with the movie and the accuracy of the case but either way you look at it, it was a true story of a conviction occurred and was eventually repealed.

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6. Jerry McGuire (1996)


Tom Cruise poses as sports agent Jerry McGuire that goes through a nervous breakdown in this mixed romance, comedic, and dramatic film. He ends up writing a mission statement about deceitfulness in the sports management business and writes "The Things We Think and Do Not Say: The Future of Our Business.” His coworkers thought it was great but his boss didn’t and McGuire was fired.

McGuire goes independent but only gains two followers, an accountant that is in love with him and an arrogant football player. From there on he struggles to gain more clients and goes through a rough relationship but winds up successful at the end.

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5. He Got Game (1998)


Staring Denzel Washington as Jake Shuttlesworth, this prison inmate is convicted of killing his wife. His son, Jesus Shuttlesworth (played by Ray Allen) was a top-ranked basketball prospect in the nation. Jake is released for one week to convince his son to go the governor’s alma matter, Big State in exchange for his prison time. It turns into a story of the father trying to regain his son’s respect and a father's decision on prison or satisfying his son.

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4. A League of Their Own (1992)


This was a fictional movie about all All-American Girls Professional Baseball League (AAGPBL). After World War II threatens to shut down the MLB, Chicago Cubs owner Walter Harvey creates a women’s league to raise money in attempt to keep the sport alive. The league only consisted of 4 teams and wasn’t a big hit to the American public at first.

Two sisters joined the league, Dottie and Kit. Kit was more interested in playing than Dottie and the two eventually ended up on different teams. Then Dottie quit but suddenly came back for the last game of the World Series to play against Kit’s team. Knowing that Kit truly wanted to win, Dottie makes a bold move that lets Kit’s team win the Championship

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3. When We Were Kings (1996)


Popular documentary that follows the famous match of George Foreman and Muhammad Ali in 1974. It shows all the buildup to the fight, the heavyweight championship in Zaire. Foreman was a champion and Ali was the major underdog. Ali backs his African America heritage and his hopes for the race in the future as he gains support from the people of Zaire.

Also shown is Foreman’s failure to gain popularity leading up to the fight. The documentary shows interviews, news clips, pictures, and a decent portion of the fight itself; including Ali’s famous “Rope-a-Dope” which resulted in Ali being knocked out in the 8th round.

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2. Hoop Dreams (1994)


Hoop Dreams was a documentary following two African-American high school students from Chicago and their dream of playing professional basketball. Originally planned to be a short documentary on PBS, it evolved into 5 years of filming. The film follows William Gates and Arthur Agee as they are recruited by St. Joseph High School in Westchester, IL. This was a primarily white high school but had an extraordinary basketball program.

Both families commuted 90 miles for the boys to attend the school. The boys tried to cope with their new environment but struggled to improve their athletic talent and the families went into an economic hardship. This was one of the first true movies to tie in race, class, economic conditions, education and values all in one by following two African-Americans in a time of struggle.

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1. Rudy (1993)


This is the true story is of Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger, a kid that had hopes and dreams to play football at the University of Notre Dame. Rudy played for his high school football team but was only 5’6’’ and 165 pounds, clearly to small for big league football. Not to mention, he didn’t have the academics or the money to attend ND. Rudy failed to get into ND the first time and attended a nearby junior college when he learns that dyslexia has been causing his poor academics throughout his life.

After numerous rejections, Rudy finally got admitted to Notre Dame and joined the practice team as a walk-on during his last semester of transfer eligibility. Coach Parseghian agreed to let Rudy dress for one game his senior year. Unfortunately for Rudy, Parseghian stepped down from the coaching position for his senior season and Dan Devine took over. It took a lot of protest and support from other players but in the end, Rudy gets to play and was carried off the field by his teammates with the whole crowd cheering.