25 November 2013 8:29 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Fighting, dying, hoping, hating … great sports films are about far more than sport itself. Here Guardian and Observer critics pick their 10 best

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10. This Sporting Life

Lindsay Anderson brought to bear on his adaptation of David Storey's first novel, all the poetic-realist instincts he had been honing for the previous decade as a documentarian in the Humphrey Jennings mould. (Anderson had won the 1953 best doc Oscar for Thursday's Children.) Filmed partly in Halifax and Leeds, but mainly in and around Wakefield Trinity Rugby League Club, one of its incidental attractions is its record of a northern, working-class sports culture that would change out of all recognition over the next couple of decades.

The story of Frank Machin, a miner who becomes a star on the rugby field, »

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