HBO (in association with the American Film Institute) presents this 1997 anthology, narrated by Live Schreiber, which looks at sports in cinema from the earliest silent films through, but not including Jerry Maguire. Watch not for dramatic scenes but for the glimpse of historical figures shown both cinematic and athletic- in this tribute to the merging of sports and Hollywood. Babe Ruth; Joe DiMaggio; Jackie Robinson; Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris and Yogi Berra with Doris Day and Cary Grant; Ben Hogan with Martin and Lewis and Tom Harmon as a sportscaster; with glimpses of silent era stars Laurel and Hardy, Harold Lloyd and Charlie Chaplin. Following silent era comedies we are shown how sound brought drama to sports themes producing, among others, 'Knute Rockne - All American' and 'The (original) Champ' with Jackie Cooper and Wallace Beery and depression era biopics showing the triumph of the common man. Next shown are 40's and 50's Film Noir such as "The Harder They Fall" and god help me even musicals like "Take Me Out To The Ball Game" and "Damn Yankees". The film includes reminisces from Jackie Cooper, Billy Crystal, Jerry Lewis, Talia Shire, Robert Redford, Gene Hackman and Vicki LaMotta, ex-wife of 'Raging Bull's' central character, Jake LaMotta. Naturally this made for television documentary features more recent footage including: 'Downhill Racer', 'Raging Bull', 'Field of Dreams', 'The Natural', 'Rocky' (I), 'Tin Cup', 'Chariots Of Fire' and their choice for the best sports film ever: 'Hoosiers'.
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