The Chiefs (2004)
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What's crazy is that this really IS a semi-pro league in Quebec. I did some research on the making of the movie itself and the people in it ... an interesting note is that that one of the main players on the team that the movie focuses on - is the brother of the producer. No matter.
There are some members of the team that have been drafted in the NHL, but other than Bobby Dollas (Ist Round draft pick who played for many years - he is not showcased in the movie), they have seen little or no NHL playing time, they have spent their entire careers languishing in the minors. And this league is "semi"-pro.
This movie is excellent - there are parts that seem so depressing, I mean this is really the end of the line. They are playing because they really love the game. Some seem like they could do nothing else BUT play hockey. I thought the coach was a weasel. The little pit bull of an owner suffered from LMS ... and the story of "Gun-For-Hire" Tim Leveque was exploitative and sad. I also read that a few years after the movie was filmed - the team folded. There was no way it could allude to this on the DVD.
I wish they would've showcased more of the players other than just five. The rabid fan they show so much ... pure comedy. This guy was right over the top when it came to 'team loyalty' ... but he added so much to the movie.
I would recommend this movie - it it so raw, so real. It really shows the unglamorous side of hockey. In a way, it really reveals how tough it is to make it the NHL - without ever referring to it.
After a very short time, I lost interest in the film. Part of it was because I have no respect or interest in this sort of game. Part of it was because the film was very amateurish in quality. Much of the footage looked like it was done on a handicam and the editing was often pretty poor. The music was 'special'. And, part of it was because the film seemed to lack structure and focus. You could do better.
By the way, around the same time this film was made, the Laval Chiefs folded after five seasons. And, judging by how little the players seemed to care about the team and the season towards the end of this film, it isn't much of a surprise.