Friday, May 6, 2011


There are very few movies about rugby, which is a shame really on account of how great a sport it is. I had a Kiwi of a coach once and he told me that rugby was a game for thugs played by gentlemen, and football was a game for gentlemen played by thugs. I used to play for CSUF (see picture at right, Dan was there too.) You can also find me at the bottom of a heap of dudes in this picture:

Invictus is easily the highest profile rugby picture ever made. Starring Danny Glover Morgan Freeman as Nelson Mandela and Jason Bourne as François Pienaar the dreamy captain of the Springboks. Mandela is trying to unite South Africa after years of apartheid and other unpleasant stuff, so he turns to Rugby to do it. Its not really a movie about rugby, its more like a movie that happens to have a lot of rugby in it. Its not bad at all and Freeman's Mandela is spot on.

Forever Strong stars Jake Tyler as the epitome of hard luck. You may remember him as Jake Tyler from Never Back Down, the boy who was handsome and football team at one high school and then moved to another high school and became UFC and although he was supposed to learn that he's not supposed to fight he continued to beat the shit out of everyone. In Forever Strong he is a self centered rugby player who DUIs and doesn't afraid of anything. While in a juvenile correction center instead of being punished he is allowed to play for a rival rugby club who teach him the value of hard work and sacrifice. Also how important it is to rip off the Haka (a spot of Māori culture of New Zealand that the All Blacks Rugby team does before each match.) probably because it just looks cool. A rather decent film and some great rugby action.

This Sporting Life is a 2 hour movie about rugby (and rape [in the 60s "No" means "Do it anyway"], and homoeroticism). A coal miner who dreamed of a better life manages to earn a spot on the city's rugby club. From there he gets carried away in a life of extravagance. The movie is shot in a strange way: halfway through it you see Richard Harris (That's right fucking Dumbledore. You heard it right.) get his face mashed up in a very brutal clothesline style tackle from another player and 6 of his teeth get broken. Then we go back to the events that lead up to it. The easiest way to tell where you are in the story is by what Dumbledore is drinking. Not very much rugby in this movie its more of a riveting character study. This movie could use a foley artist, it is eerily silent at times. Great actoring though, check it out:

There's also a movie about an all gay rugby club from New York. I'm not sure why they would want to have a team with nothing but gays but they seem pretty adamant about it. Here's a trailer, haven't seen this one though:


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