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The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

Fit to be king
Lilli Dellheim '25 M.A., Special to the Hawk • July 13, 2024

From the court to the red carpet

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GRAPHIC: CASEY WOOD ’23/THE HAWK

Post-Oscar blues? The Hawk sports staff selects its favorite sports movies

Tyler Nice, Sports Editor

Hoosiers (1986)

Based on a true story, “Hoosiers” is a basketball film for the everyman. A quintessential underdog tale, the heart of the movie is the uniqueness and vulnerability of its characters. The ensemble of reject coach Norman Dale, played by Gene Hackman, reluctant superstar Jimmy Chitwood, played by Maris Valainis, underhand-shooting Ollie McLellan, played by Wade Schenck, and the consistently inebriated but well-intentioned Shooter Flatch, played by Dennis Hopper, take Hickory High, a tiny school in a rural Indiana farm town, all the way to the state championships. 

My favorite scene in the movie comes when the team arrives at Butler Fieldhouse in Indianapolis for the state semifinals and finals. The gymnasium is far bigger than any of the players have seen, let alone played in. In an effort to ease the visibly awestruck players’ nerves, Coach Dale measures the distance to the free throw line to the basket and from the floor to the rim, proving that the dimensions in what seems like a gym from another world are the exact same as the school’s gym in Hickory.


Aaron Tully, Assistant Sports Editor 

The Sandlot (1993)

Released in 1993, “The Sandlot” takes viewers back to the summer of 1962 where Scott Smalls, played by Tom Guiry, and his family move to the suburbs of Los Angeles. Smalls befriends a group of kids in the neighborhood who play baseball in the local sandlot every day. Smalls has no idea how to play, so he tries to learn, and fails miserably, but is eventually taught by the team’s best player, Benny Rodriguez, played by Mike Vitar. 

The team is filled with comical characters that create some of the film’s best moments, like Ham Porter’s argument with the kids of another team, or Squints’ antics in the pool scene. The movie ends with the kids going their separate ways over the years, with Benny making it to the Major Leagues as a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers, and Smalls ending up as a sports broadcaster who covers the Dodgers. The movie has a great mix of comedy and heartwarming moments that make it an enjoyable watch no matter how many times you have seen it.


AnnE Potter, Hawk Staff 

Silver  Linings  Playbook (2012)

Starring Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawerence and Robert De Niro, “Silver Linings Playbook” tells the story of Pat Solatano, played by Cooper, as he gets his feet back underneath him. After losing his job, his wife, and after spending time in a psychiatric hospital to receive treatment for bipolar disorder, Pat moves back in with his Philadelphia Eagles-obsessed parents. He meets a widow named Tiffany Maxwell, played by Lawerence, who convinces him to join a dance competition with her in exchange for helping Pat get his wife back. 

This movie gives an inside look on what it looks like to be a diehard Eagles fan with all the superstitions as well as the intense atmosphere of dance competitions. Overall, the movie’s message was always to look on the bright side of things. It has a little bit of home on the screen for viewers from the surrounding Philadelphia area since the movie was filmed in Delaware County. Overall, “Silver Linings Playbooks” leaves viewers feeling good. 


Chris Kline, Staff Designer

Air Bud (1997)

“Air Bud” wowed movie watchers in 1997 with its epic saga of a ball-playing canine named Air Buddy. Josh Framm, played by Kevin Zegers, finds and adopts a dog who has the unique talent of playing basketball. From there, Josh joins his school’s basketball team, where he befriends the ex-pro ball player and school maintenance man, Arthur Chaney, played by Bill Cobbs. Chaney eventually becomes the head coach of the team and allows Buddy to become the team’s mascot. Eventually, when Josh’s team reaches success in the regular season, Buddy’s real owner comes to reclaim the dog. Buddy eventually escapes with the help of Josh and runs into the forest, only to return in the state championship game when the team was down a player. After finding out that there are no rules stopping a dog from playing, Buddy subs in and saves the day with two clutch free throws for the team. Josh hits a buzzer beater to win the state championship, and the movie ended with the town judge giving Josh full custody of Buddy.

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