Saturday, July 4, 2009

Miracle on the Fourth of July: a quick guide to Team USA-related entertainment


If you want to combine your favorite hobby (obsessing over hockey) with a thematic celebration of the Fourth of July, we have a quick guide of some Miracle on Ice-related entertainment. We even developed an ADVANCED* and SOPHISTICATED system to rate their quality.

*Any word in ALL CAPS in this post will be sarcastic.

"Miracle" - the Disney movie starring Kurt Russell as Herb Brooks

For non-hockey fans, "Miracle" is probably a nauseating load of sports movie cliches. For American hockey fans like us, it is one of the best serious hockey movies ever made. Russell did an uncanny job portraying Brooks, even kind of looking like him and wearing those absurd pants.

Review: "If you lose this game don't watch this movie at least once, you'll TAKE IT TO YOUR GRAVE."

"The Boys of Winter" by Wayne Coffey

When people re-tell the story of the Miracle on Ice, they make it seem like the Americans just learned to skate last week. Like a Jamaican bobsled team or something.

The truth is that Herb Brooks collected a bunch of plucky winners from the college hockey ranks to play a system he thought could give the Russians fits. Was it still improbable? Of course! But they were better than you maybe thought.

This book tells their story with great, often hilarious and sometimes tragic, detail.

Review: Nine boisterous Mike Eruzione celebrations out of ten.

The Miracle on Ice Made-for-TV movie (can be streamed on Netflix, if you hate yourself/America/the idea of decent film making.)

Don't bother.

Review: Worse than allowing a last second goal and then benching the best goalie in the world.

Do You Believe in Miracles? The Story of the 1980 U.S. Hockey Team

Just awesome. There really isn't much more you can say about this great HBO documentary. It includes archival footage of the game as well as "nature of the time" clips of people waiting desperately for gas. There are player interviews from both sides and everything you'd expect from a great documentary.

Review: The gold medal of Miracle on Ice culture.


Rob said...

I LOVED "The Boys of Winter" book... Great read!

jamestobrien said...

Absolutely a must-read. Even for Canadians, I'd say.

Joe said...

When you mentioned a special scheduled post for the 4th in your previous post, the thought occurred to me that I'm a contributor here, and could go look and see the new post before it went up! I could beat the system! And then I found out I can't view posts that I didn't make and have not been published yet. I had to wait till the 4th. :-(

jamestobrien said...

Really, Joe? I thought you could preview them. Odd.