Maradona. Pelé. Best. Northern Ireland's legendary star remains one of the most naturally gifted footballers there has ever been. Famously called the 'best player in the world' by Pelé, George Best galvanized Manchester United's five-year recovery from the tragedy of the Munich air crash. His skill and exuberance inspired them to win league titles and the European Cup, even though he was little more than a teenager. Tragically, his career in the upper echelons of sport was over before he turned 29, the result of his bruising battle with alcoholism and the crushing pressure of modern fame. (After all, this was Britain in the frenzy of Beatle-mania and 1960s youth culture, where Best was dubbed 'El Beatle' by the world's media.) Producer John Battsek (2016's Oscar-nominated Winter on Fire: Ukraine's Fight for Freedom, The Imposter, Project Nim) and director Daniel Gordon re-team after their acclaimed, Emmy-nominated Hillsborough to deliver a heart-breaking portrait of one of the world's...
An examination of the life of Northern Ireland's (and arguably the world's) most mercurial footballing talent that is absorbing only because he's a fascinating symbol of the self-destructive tendencies that reside within many geniuses. Unfortunately, it's light on fresh insight and refers only fleetingly to his darker side (brawling and wife-beating). And any documentary that relies so heavily on talking heads rather than investigative journalism is likely to be distorted by the interviewees understandable tendency to paint themselves in a positive light.
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