Sports Flicks To Cure Your Withdrawal
Greetings From The Booth!
The coronavirus pandemic, which has affected us all in one way or another, hit home for a lot of us recently with the cancelation of our annual Apple Blossom Festival. In addition to the economic impact of having no “Bloom” this year, there will be a huge empty hole in late April/early May, when the Festival usually takes place. I have worked the Bloom every year since moving to Winchester in 1983, and even before that, my Mom used to take us to the Grand Feature Parade when we were little kids. This is going to be a strange Spring.
Today was to have been one of the great days in sports, Opening Day around the Major Leagues. On Opening Day, the grass is a little greener, the (home) uniforms a little whiter, the hot dogs just a little tastier, the sun a little brighter. Opening Day symbolizes renewal, as “the boys” head north from Spring training to begin another season…
Instead, an unseen villain has shut down the MLB season (at least for now), as stadiums around the country are vacant.This time of year is a wonderful time if you’re a sports fan. In addition to baseball, there’s March Madness, the Kentucky Derby, and the NBA & NHL seasons headed toward the playoffs. Let’s not forget The Masters. Not this year. I can only watch so many replays of past games, so to feed my “sports fix”, I turn to sports movies. With almost nothing going on in the world of sports (I can’t even find Dodgeball on “The Ocho”), I thought I’d share some of my faves with you…and here they are, broken down by sport:
BASEBALL. Baseball provides a virtual treasure trove of films. My “go-to” is The Natural. You can’t go wrong with Field of Dreams, the Major League movies (the first is still the best), and I love The Rookie. Don’t forget Ken Burns’ “Baseball” series if you love the history of the game.
BASKETBALL. For me, it’s Blue Chips with Nick Nolte and Shaq. Hoosiers is a classic. I kinda like Love & Basketball. I don’t think there are as many classic hoop movies as in baseball, but the first two on my list should help ease the pain of no March Madness.
HOCKEY. Miracle, the story of the 1980 USA Olympic Hockey team, is at the top of my list. Kurt Russell’s (as coach Herb Brooks) speech is reason alone to watch. And there’s always the laugh-riot Slap Shot.
HORSE RACING. Grab a mint julep, put on that seersucker suit (and ladies sport your wildest Derby hats), and kick back with the story of Seabiscuit, a wonderful movie that tells the tale of an underdog horse and an underdog trainer, and the owner that gave them both a chance, set against the backdrop of the Great Depression. Try not to cry, I dare ya. Honorable mention to Secretariat.
GOLF. Caddyshack and Tin Cup. ‘Nuff said.
I’m sure you have your favorites, so pop that corn and let the magic of Hollywood take you away from the now-vacant sports world. If you’ll excuse me, I think I hear the faint, distant sound of a cheering crowd, the National Anthem, and an umpire yelling “Play Ball!”
Until next time from the (projection) Booth…GO HORNETS!