6.9/10
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100 user 38 critic

Cool Runnings (1993)

When a Jamaican sprinter is disqualified from the Olympic Games, he enlists the help of a dishonored coach to start the first Jamaican Bobsled Team.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Irv
...
Kurt Hemphill
...
Paul Coeur ...
Roger
Larry Gilman ...
Larry
Charles Hyatt ...
Winston Stona ...
Coolidge
Bertina Macauley ...
Pauline Stone Myrie ...
Kristoffer Cooper ...
Winston
...
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Storyline

Irving Blitzer disgraced himself when putting extra weights into his team's bob in the Olympics, resulting in his gold medal being taken away from him. Years later, Derice Bannock, son of a former friend of Irv, fails to qualify for the 100-yard sprint for the Olympics due to a stupid accident. But when he hears of Irving Blitzer living also on Jamaica, Derice decides to go to the Games anyway, if not as a sprinter, then as a bobsledder. After some starting problems, the first Jamaican bobsledding team is formed and heads for Calgary. In the freezing weather Derice, Sanka, Junior and Yul are only laughed at, since nobody can take a Jamaican bobsledding team led by a disgraced trainer seriously. But team spirit and a healthy self-confidence may lead to a few surprises in the upcoming Winter Games. Written by Julian Reischl <julianreischl@mac.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Inspired by the true story of the first Jamaican Olympic bobsled team. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild language and brief violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

1 October 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Blue Maaga  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$68,856,263

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$154,856,263
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(archive footage)| (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Jamaican bobsledder characters in the movie were all fictional characterizations and were not based on their real life counterparts. John Candy's Irving "Irv" Blitzer coach character is also fictional. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the film, when Derice is unable to qualify to the 1988 Summer Olympics Athletics, the president of the Jamaican Olympic Comitee tells him that to travel to the event he must practice either Cycling or Boxing, as those are the only other sports where they would participate. Actually Jamaica also participated in Table Tennis and Weightlifting. See more »

Quotes

[the team emerges from the airport into a blizzard]
Irv: It's not so much the heat, it's the humidity that'll kill you.
See more »

Connections

References Knute Rockne All American (1940) See more »

Soundtracks

Love You Want
Written by Winston 'Pipe' Matthews (as Winston Matthews), Lloyd McDonald, and Richard Feldman
Performed by Wailing Souls
Courtesy of Chaos/Columbia Records
By Arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
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User Reviews

 
Sweet, disarming film
23 September 1999 | by See all my reviews

Hands up all Jamaicans. (There are only 2.6 million people in Jamaica - so I know you don't account for a large percentage of the English-speaking world.) Hands up all those people with any interest at all in bobsledding. Hah! I knew it! No-one.

That's why `Cool Runnings' succeeds. It depends not at all on aggressive nationalism (it couldn't afford to, with a constituency of 2.6 million), and people of all countries are free to participate in the Jamaicans' perfectly reasonable patriotism. (Probably even the Swiss, whose bobsled team comes across as more than a trifle arrogant.) Nor is there any of that worship of a particular sport that makes baseball movies so unendurable for people outside of North America, Cuba and Japan. (Not that I have any evidence that baseball movies are popular in Cuba or Japan.)

There isn't any power-of-positive-thinking psychobabble, either - at least, it doesn't dominate. The four Jamaican bobsledders are separate people with different goals and ways of thinking. The coach (played beautifully by John Candy, who proves that he can act without playing the clown) doesn't ram a particular ideology down his players' throats. I doubt that any sports film has a more civilised and reasonable coach.

It comes down to this: we are given a reason to care about the characters, unrelated to nationality; and we are given a story that's worth following, even if we would never follow the sport itself. The clichés are fewer than usual and never offensive. It's a sweet film, and I doubt there's more than a handfull of people who could resist its charm.


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