The Best of Times (1986)

PG-13  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Sport  |  31 January 1986 (USA)
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Reviews: 37 user | 13 critic

A small-town loser determines to have one more shot at the big time by winning a football game.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Gigi Hightower
Elly Dundee
The Colonel


Jack Dundee is a meek banker living in Taft, California. He constantly thinks about the 1972 high school football game between Taft and powerhouse Bakersfield. Dundee fumbled a perfect pass from quarterback and friend Reno Hightower, and the game ended in a tie. He wants to replay the game, but has trouble convincing Reno and the town to replay the game. So Jack resorts to desperate measures to make the game reality. Written by Pat McCurry

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Haven't you ever done something in your life you wish you could do over again... and this time do it right! After fourteen years, Jack finally has a chance to replay the worst moment of his life. But first, he has to convince Reno that history won't repeat itself. See more »


Comedy | Drama | Sport


PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

31 January 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Brigada do Reumático  »

Box Office


$7,790,931 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Though Hightower and Dundee's alma mater is universally referred to by the characters as "Taft", logos, signage and lettermen's jackets in the film identify it as (the fictional) Midway Union High School. See more »


In the opening scene, which shows Reno throwing the pass to Jack, when Jack says,"His knee is smashed, his career is over", it shows Reno on the ground in pain holding his right knee. But before they replay the game, in the locker room, it shows Reno injecting his left knee. See more »


Luther Jackson: Uh, two minutes left to kick-off. Time for my last smoke.
Reno Hightower: You lazy jive-ass! You're soft, you're slow and your hands are for shit!
Luther Jackson: Hey, who woke you up?
Reno Hightower: Get on the field and shut up, Luther!
Luther Jackson: Reno, you're a prick, and you always were a prick.
Reno Hightower: Great, great. Now get your ass on the field. NOW!
See more »


Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Robin Williams/James Taylor (1988) See more »


Land Of Hope and Glory
(Pomp And Circumstance No. 1)
Music by Sir Edward Elgar
Words by A.C. Benson
Used by arrangement with Boosey & Company Ltd. and Boosey & Hawkes, Inc.
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User Reviews

If I Could Turn Back Time
27 March 2012 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

If you can ever wrap your mind around the concept of Robin Williams as a high school jock I think you might enjoy The Best Of Times. What this is not is a film using the hit song from La Cage Aux Folles as a theme.

Instead Robin Williams plays a guy with a reputation of blowing a long pass from quarterback Kurt Russell in a final game with Bakersfield that blew the state championship for the best high school team that Taft, California ever produced. In fact the opening narrative makes it quite clear that Taft, California is one loser of a town throughout its history. Still living in a small town and married to Holly Palance, daughter of Donald Moffat who was a booster of the Bakersfield team has made life pretty miserable.

No more miserable than it was for Kurt Russell who blew out a knee when the entire Bakersfield line nailed him just as he got off the pass that Williams dropped thereby losing a possible pro career.

So Williams who's had 15 years of taunts decides to challenge his father-in-law to replay the game and maybe history won't repeat itself. It's going to take a lot though to motivate the rest of the team, especially Russell, but Williams has a bag of tricks.

I guess there's nothing sillier then old men trying to act young again. As Bill Holden said to Gloria Swanson, there's nothing wrong with being 50 unless you try to act like you're 25. That forms the basis for most of the comedy in The Best Of Times.

Both Williams and Russell have done better work, but this one will provide a few laughs. Still Williams as a jock does not compute.

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