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|Index||43 reviews in total|
...what Youngblood attempts, which is to tell the story of an up
star at a crucial point in his hockey career. Of all the hockey movies
seen, including Slap Shot, The Mighty Ducks movies, The Cutting Edge
focuses on hockey for only the beginning of the film) and the Van-Damme
action-film Sudden Death, (which in my opinion is the absolute worst
hockey-related movie ever made) the plot of Youngblood is the most
reasonable to me. I have not seen Mystery Alaska, but from a friend of
mine's description, it sounds quite far-fetched. (although I suppose a
group of Alaskans probably would have a chance against the Rangers
I was born late in 1979, and first saw Youngblood when I was quite young. In fact, it was the first hockey movie I ever saw, and to date the only one I own. Part of my fascination with this film resulted from my passion for the sport of ice hockey, which I began playing at the age of 4 and maintained competitively through the collegiate level.
What I like most about Youngblood is that the story is centered around one player (Dean) and his struggles to advance his career, despite his talent. The obstacles he faces in the film: lack of toughness, and clashing with the coach, and knowing his chances to go pro are running slim, are typical themes hockey players share as they advance toward the ultimate goal of one day playing in the NHL. While Slapshot is hockey's cult classic, it is more like Animal House on Ice than a realistic attempt to portray ice hockey, which Youngblood attempts, and quite honestly a film of such nature should be produced for the avid hockey fans around the world.
Without a doubt, Youngblood fails to portray skillful hockey, and the off-ice action only mildly captures the life of a junior hockey player, but had the proper research been done and certain changes made pre-production, Youngblood could have joined Slapshot in hockey fans' movie collections. The games needed to be faster, the dialogue snappier, (especially the Keanu Reeves brainbusters) and the Rocky-ish training diminished the quality of the film, because not only would Dean not go from being the weakest in the league to kicking the toughest guy's butt in a week, but most wannabe professionals and junior teams have regimented training programs to follow on a regular basis, and do not begin two days before the championship game of the league they're in.
Cutting that scene could have made room for a far more realistic side of the game, such as Dean being contacted by prospective coaches, agents and other interested parties to notify him they'd be coming to watch his games. (like most prospects with hopes of going pro have to deal with)
Dean simply mentions that he wants to go pro and needs to play juniors if he's going to get a contract, but that is the last we hear about him playing pro, aside from mentioning it to Jessie, coach Chadwick's sexy daughter, and Dean's love interest. From my experiences, any player in junior hockey who did not receive a fair amount of attention from scouts was quite likely not going anywhere, so there should have been some effort to include them to advance the plot of his odds of making it, because scouts would have certainly had more influence on Dean playing tougher than anyone in the film does, although in reality his teammates should have been getting on him too.
As for character interplay, Dean's relationship with Chadwick's daughter is entertaining, if far-fetched. Perhaps the most realistic relationship between characters in the film is the one between Sutton and Youngblood, as the top talents of hockey teams often have an appreciation for one another and pal-up off the ice. Not to mention, the Hollywood impact on the film is the only logical explanation for Youngblood leaving the team after Sutton's injury. In all my years as a player, I'd never heard of that one, although, I suppose it just explains Dean's irrational behavior resulting from his conflicts with coach Chadwick and his nemesis, Racki.
On the whole, I appreciate this movie, but I certainly wish it had more of an advanced pace and that it better explored and explained some of the typical stereotypes of hockey players that it shows (star player chases and gets the girl everyone wants, the bar scene, the initiation, the opposing team's heckling fans, etc.)
As a long-time hockey player and fan who now studies Scriptwriting at Ithaca College, I feel somewhat obligated to pen a true-to-life hockey film for the die-hard lovers of the game out there. Somebody needs to!! Youngblood, if nothing else, at least will make a decent reference.
I really cant see why people think this film isnt at least worthy of a 8-10 rating.
This movie is in my top 10 mivies of all time along with Casino, T2, Aliens, Goodfellas, Die Hard, Braveheart, Pulp Fiction ,Reservoir Dogs and The Real McCoy which is a film about a bank robbery.
Youngblood is such a great film. It is the best Ice Hockey movie i have ever seen and he also gets a hot babe in the film too. When he is taught how to fight u know its a predictable ending but at the same time u just really want to see him kick that bad guys ass.
My advice is watch it enjoy it and as long as u dont over hype it the film will be most enjoyable
While there have been many posts stating that this movie is a poor representation of what hockey is really like, I must disagree. I have played hockey up to the college level, and I have had more than one occasion to tryout or play for junior teams in Canada. While many specifics in the movie are exagerated, the parts that people seem to be most offended by are the parts that are true. There is something to be said for rinks that have chain link fencing in stead of glass, every tryout has one or two guys that trip over the blue line untouched, fighting at tryouts, and yes, there are Canadian towns which are old and run down. The social aspects of the movie are definately true: the woman that every guy has been with, the initiating of the rookie, silly girls at the local bar, and of course, the unruley fans. While the movie does take some creative liscence, it is an accurate representation of what life is like for a hockey player trying to make it in junior hockey. I love this movie. It is a must see for anyone who plays the game.
Maybe it's because I neither follow hockey nor care for it, or maybe it's
because I'm a 15-year-old female teenager, but I liked this movie. Sure,
it's nothing special or extraordinary, in fact its plot has been done a
million times. But I just liked it. It's virtually impossible not to like
Dean Youngblood (and it's got nothing to do with the fact that Rob Lowe is
hot) and to cheer for him when he finally learns how to hit a guy. The
romance between Dean and Jessie actually doesn't seem forced; the two of
them have a certain chemistry that is quite obvious to viewers like myself.
Cynthia Gibb is all-natural in her role as Jessie, and Patrick Swayze evokes
empathy in the viewer as the high-school drop-out who is *this close* to
being a pro hockey player. But it is Rob Lowe who basically carried the
whole movie, and once again, it has got nothing to do with the fact that he
Overall, this is a feel-good hockey movie that I liked. I usually can't stand sports movies, as I hate sports with an intense passion, but this one is just...well, it's just nice. And then there's Rob Lowe...
There are a lot of angry Canadian people expressing hatred for this movie. I can totally understand where they are coming from. I play the game of hockey, and I find it hard to believe that every time a player touches the ice, he's scoring goals. Added to that, how he learns to fight, and works out for a week, and all of a sudden beats up a guy that kicked his butt a couple of weeks before. BUT.... You also have to understand something else. Since Slap Shot, an undoubtedly awesome classic to all hockey fans around the world, there had not been an attempt at a movie that mainly focused on hockey. The makers of this movie had to be creative to attract attention for the sport. For example, the stick fight, the constant beautiful goals, the way he won the fight. It had some reality to it like the jokes played on the rookie in the bar and when they shave him, you know, down there. The way he was put up in someones house. The most impressive thing about the movie, was the beginning and how it set up the rest of the movie. It starts with a home video of Dean(Rob Lowe) when he was very young playing with his older brother and their friends. It shows how clearly dominant he was and that leads into the present time with him saying, "I've been offered a tryout with the Hamilton Mustangs." And to Canadians who feel like this movie disrespected your great sport (yes, i mean GREAT sport), remember this. When they are on their way to Canada, Deans older brother who is driving him says you are gonna have to learn, "Oh, Canada" and also when Dean says, "They'll never catch me" showing cockiness like he's superior to anyone in the league, his brother says, "Oh, they'll catch you." I love hockey, I loved this movie. Did it have it's flaws? Yeah, plenty of them. But if you're looking for an inspiring, action filled drama, give this movie a whirl.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I know nothing about hockey but managed to learn a few things from
watching this formulaic sports story.
One is that a goalie has to be extremely supple. He must be able to do splits comfortably. And there is an unsettling scene towards the end, just before Rob Lowe's penalty shot, when the goalie of the enemy team (that's the proper term) extends one ugly padded leg in one direction and kneels on the other, then slithers slowly back and forth in front of the net like a dangerous eel or serpent. He also apparently gets to wear a mask as threatening as he likes -- skulls, a mass of stitches, any design will do.
Another thing I learned is that hockey isn't all speed and skill with the stick. The teams, the referees, the coaches, the fans, are all allowed to stand back and not interfere with two players who have decided to duke it out, first with sticks, like Medieval jousters, then with bare fists like kids in a junior high school playground. The fight can last a long time, until one of the combatants hits the dirt, or rather the ice.
There's nothing much new about the plot. Lowe is a natural talent on the ice but must quit for a time during his rise to celebrity in order to overcome some personal demons and then return to become the star he was always destined to be.
He's only seventeen years old and gets hazed when he joins the Mustangs. But he makes a friend too, Patrick Swayze, who tells him that nothing, absolutely nothing, compares to playing in the rink. I figured Swayze at once for a paralyzing C-spine injury that would turn him into a mummy from the neck down. I almost got it right.
Then there's Racki, an ugly name for a gargantuan enemy player given to smashing members of the other team and playing dirty. I figured Lowe would wind up beating him to a pulp. Bingo.
Then there's Cynthia Gibb as the daughter of Lowe's manager, Ed Lauter. Lauter doesn't like the team even looking at her. But how could anyone not? She was a model at fourteen and is now the cutest, cleanest face on the screen since Sandra Dee, but less debauched than Sandra Dee always appeared, what with her Bayonne accent.
Gibbs' Dad and Gibbs' own reluctance to have her date a team member are soon overcome. The obstacle is perfunctory. We've already seen Lowe's manly chest and buns of steel, which are pretty revolting, but we get the merest glimpse of Cynthia Gibbs' far more graceful nudity. She can't act but it doesn't matter because Lowe can't act either. That doesn't stop them from being beautiful people.
Patrick Swayze, on the other hand, gives a convincing performance as an experienced player. I've always admired Swayze, a dancer, singer-songwriter, horse breeder, who trained at the Joffrey Ballet -- and was from Texas. Died a way we don't want to die.
Best performance award goes to -- envelope, please -- Eric Nesterenko as Lowe's Dad. It's not a bravura performance. It's a reassuring one. He has the same sympatico quality on screen that Richard Farnsworth once had, or that Werner Herzog has now. If I were to spill the beans to someone, I wouldn't mind if the listener were someone like Nesterenko. Of course that's his screen persona. In real life he may get his kicks pulling the wings off flies.
This isn't any masterpiece of film making. You can pretty readily call the shots. But it's better than I'd expected it to be, which may or may not be saying much since my expectations were pretty low to begin with.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
It's nothing new, it was done before this, and it has been done
countless times since. The typical sport drama where the young athlete
defies all the odds after gaining our sympathy and support and after
coming close to defeat on occasions, overcomes the impossible to win
dramatically... and win the heart of the girl he likes. "Rocky" did
it... need I say more? "Youngblood" stars a very young Rob Lowe, a very
young Patrick Swayze, Fionnula Flanagan as a nymphomaniac (huh?) and a
cringing and very embarrassing performance from Keanu Reeves attempting
a Quebecois accent, making him sound like he has some sort of mental
retardation, added together with his caveman look in this. I swear,
when I saw him in the middle of a hockey team p*ss up, I gaped in
horror. This chap clearly had a long way to go before "The Matrix". The
story is simple, and indeed, very predictable. If you have even half a
brain you'll be able to tell what happens after reading this: Seventeen
year-old pretty boy Dean Youngblood leaves his poverty-stricken farm
life behind him and heads up north to Canada to try for National Hockey
League fame, hoping to go pro in a few years. He is something special -
very fast on the ice and skillful with the hockey stick, but when it
comes to the physical side of the game, he is a complete wuss. He makes
the team - the Mustangs, but not after being decked by the caveman
Racki (George J. Finn - where did he disappear to? he was never in
anything after it). Racki ends up on another team, and later on, when
the Mustangs play Racki's team, Youngblood and the rest of the team are
harassed by the psychopathic Racki, and the cock-of-the-walk Sutton
(Patrick Swayze), the Mustang's top goal-scorer, ends up nearly in a
coma after an off-the-puck challenge. Wussy Youngblood quits the team
and returns home, where his brother beefs him up with some real
physical boxing training... and at this stage it's looking like we've
wandered onto the set of "Rocky"... and Youngblood returns to the
Mustangs, and the girl he loves - the coaches daughter - to face Racki
and his team again...
Despite the fact it's technically a terrible film, I really enjoyed "Youngblood". It's bravado and over-the-top heroics are typical and sad, but that makes it all the more enjoyable at the same time. It's inspirational... which is what these films always try to be, so it succeeds in what it obviously sets out to do. You may be wondering just what the hell I mean by homosexual overtones, well that I felt in a few scenes where Youngblood is walking (pretty much stark) naked down the corridor with the sweat shining off him in the dull lighting, and then, the biggest culprit, is when the rest of the team inexplicably hold him down and shave his pubic region. I first came across Rob Lowe in the film "Bad Influence", which is a superb film, and Lowe, being the older and mature actor he is by this stage, is immense in it. Here, he is very young and as stale and plain as a statue. He is clearly just getting through this on his good looks, and then bring in Patrick Swayze, who believe it or not, actually acts in this. A decent performance from the "Dirty Dancing" star, it has to be said. Ed Lauter is in top form as the tough, hard to please Mustang coach, and his daughter - same as Lowe, she has nothing else to offer other than eye candy - is played by Cynthia Gibb. I quite liked Jim Youngs's performance as Kelly; Youngblood's older brother who shows him how to stop being a wuss and start sticking up for himself on the ice rig. Because of him, it all builds up to a very interesting, albeit, comical and predictable, conclusion, where Youngblood turns to face Racki at the final whistle...
Rob Lowe is way too much the matinée idol type to ever be believable as
a hockey player. In fact that's the story of Youngblood, that of a
player who values his looks a lot more than mixing it up on the ice to
help win a game.
Try as I might I just can't see Rob Lowe as a hockey player, even one who won't get down and dirty. He's a speedy fellow on the ice and it's his speed that gets him a berth on a Canadian minor league hockey team, on which he has teammates like Patrick Swayze and Keanu Reeves.
The best scene in the film is where Rob Lowe gets literally raped by the unofficial landlady of the team, Fionula Flannagan. Apparently she gets first dibs on all the new hockey players in helping them keep their equipment in working order. Considering before Lowe, she had both Swayze and Reeves, I'd say she's quite the mechanic.
Rob has a more serious involvement with Cynthia Gibb who is the daughter of Coach Ed Lauter. But she's also daddy's little girl which doesn't help matters.
Our Canadian reviewers say that Youngblood is a gross distortion of Canadian hockey. I'm in no position to comment, but I've seen enough to know that it's a sport where violence is the norm and if you can't mix it up and are not willing to risk your good looks, you won't last too long.
Youngblood is now 23 years old and assuming Rob Lowe's character had a decent sized playing career, I guarantee that Rob today would not look like the fellow who worked for President Martin Sheen in the West Wing.
I found myself bored by this movie. Firstly, I did not like Rob Lowe or
Cynthia Gibb in this movie. I found their characters predictable and
cliché and their romance even more so. I did like Patrick Swayze, I
though he gave a good performance. But I have to say in a movie like
this it isn't good to judge performances as the material isn't very
hard to act.
My main problem was as I said, it doesn't capture your attention and i'm mostly talking about the hockey games. I felt like their wasn't even an effort to make the action interesting. I should have been cheering the characters on at that last hockey game but I bored. I guess my opinion is a bit biased after watching the Maurice Richard movie whose hockey sequences were rivaled by no one else in their excitement and joy.
I certainly would not recommend this movie to hockey fans. Maybe the lingering Rob Lowe fans would enjoy it but i found this to be a boring and unmoving film even for a teen movie.
This film is well cast, and acted, there is a story, and the game of
hockey is made clear even to those who are not fans. Some of the
photography is way above average, for example the scene of puck
shooting exercises by "Youngblood". The relationships between two
brothers, father son, and two friends Judd Lowe and Patrick Swayze are
all well presented. There was not a dull moment in this film. But above
all this was a good vehicle to show Judd Lowe's talent. He really held
the movie. It is a shame that he lost the momentum of his career by
becoming addicted to drugs and alcohol.
Of course it did not hurt to have Patrick Swayze, Ed Lauter, Cynthia Gibb, and even Keanu Reeves. I am comparing it to another movie about young men whose dream is to join a professional sports team (Baseball) "Sugar" (2008) which was slow moving, Youngblood has a good pace, and flow of events.
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