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The Game of Their Lives (2005)

PG  |   |  Drama, History, Sport  |  22 April 2005 (USA)
6.2
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 2,435 users   Metascore: 47/100
Reviews: 45 user | 21 critic | 13 from Metacritic.com

Based on a true story, this film tells the tale of the 1950 US soccer team who, against all odds, beat England 1 - 0 in the city of Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Although no US team has ever won a World Cup title, this story is about the family traditions and passions which shaped the lives of the players who made up this team of underdogs.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Frank Borghi
...
...
Frank 'Pee Wee' Wallace
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Stanley Mortensen
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Charlie 'Gloves' Columbo
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Gino Pariani
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Harry Keough (as Zachery Bryan)
...
...
Joe Maca
Nelson Vargas ...
John 'Clarkie' Souza
Craig Hawksley ...
Walter Giesler
...
Admiral Higgins
...
Older Dent McSkimming
...
Dent McSkimming
...
Bill Jeffrey (as John Rhys Davies)
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Storyline

Based on a true story, this film tells the tale of the 1950 US soccer team who, against all odds, beat England 1 - 0 in the city of Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Although no US team has ever won a World Cup title, this story is about the family traditions and passions which shaped the lives of the players who made up this team of underdogs.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The match against England in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, on June 19, 1950 was "the game of their lives". See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some mild language and thematic elements | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

22 April 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Miracle Match  »

Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$175,336 (USA) (22 April 2005)

Gross:

$375,474 (USA) (10 June 2005)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film claimed the English player Stan Mortensens scored a hat-trick in a FA Cup Final game 3 years earlier, when it was not to happen for 3 years in the future. This was the famous "Matthews Final" of 1953 named after Mortensen's team mate Stan Matthews, despite Mortensen's hat-trick. This hat-trick is also the first Wembley FA Cup Final hat-trick. See more »

Goofs

When Frank and Walter go to Joe's place of work, Frank lifts his arm to rest on top of a refrigerator then, in the next shot, he goes to lift it again. See more »

Connections

Referenced in My Big Break (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Opus One
Written by Sy Oliver
Performed by the Time Travelers Big Band
Courtesy of MuseNet.Com
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Way We Were: Sportsmanship in the 1950s
9 October 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

THE MIRACLE MATCH (released rather unsuccessfully in the theaters as THE GAME OF THEIR LIVES) is yet another one of those feel good movies that dwells on the concept that the problems of humanity can be resolved on the playing field. And that is not a bad metaphor: wouldn't it be great if current world problems could be worked out under the guidelines of teamwork? The film is a heartwarming look at the true story of a 1950's event when a US Soccer team was created in St. Louis, Missouri, the core of the team being from Italian families in the La Montagna area of St. Louis and augmented from teams across the country, traveled to Brazil and defeated the English team in the World Cup Soccer event - a fact that startled the sports world. The St. Louis boys include Gerard Butler (yes, the film was made in 2005 and yet Butler looks younger and speaks without his brogue), Jay Rodan, Costas Mandylor, Louis Mandylor, Zachery Ty Bryan, Jimmy Jean-Louis, Richard Jenik and Nelson Vargas. They all do well, giving us the feeling that they are fully attuned to the story. The other actors (including a bit part by Patrick Stewart) handle their rather weakly written parts adequately.

The problem with the film, though probably quite accurate in reporting a true incident (the real and surviving original players form the team are included in the rather corny ending), is that we really don't get to know the personalities of the team players well enough to create a successful drama. The majority of the film is shot during soccer games and that becomes monotonous to those of us who are not soccer devotees. But given that problem, the film has a sweetness about it and an honesty that while bordering on saccharine does indeed emphasize the team spirit needed to conquer all odds. And in the end it is worth watching to view Gerard Butler in yet another type of character: the actor is well on the rise! Grady Harp


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