A sports movie is generally a movie genre which makes use of sports as the main theme of the movie. It’s a multi-media production where in a single movie, an individual sport, athlete, or viewer of sport are heavily involved, and that depend strongly on sport for their story resolution or motivation. It’s a very broad category, but one which often underrates its importance in our society.
There are several sub-genres of sports movies which exist. For example, the classic NASCAR racer film “NASCAR” is an excellent example of how entertainment can be made to be very strong with a relatively small amount of technical equipment and a lot of human interaction. The movie even has a running commentary track, which provides commentary on each stage of the race, to make it more engaging and enjoyable to viewers. The modern sports film has a similar type of commentary style, often utilizing statistics and facts to provide a point of view on the events of the day.
The modern sports film also often takes place in a particular location (usually an athletic arena), during a particular time of day, and is about a major event taking place in the larger context of a competition. For example, the modern sports drama that unfolds during the Winter Olympics is fascinating and captivating. During the buildup to the games, we see athletes preparing both mentally and physically. We also see competitors using training and preparation, to try and get ahead of each other and gain advantage over the competition. It’s all about trying to win the games, but what makes the Olympic sports drama work is the human element: the characters competing, and the spectators who follow them, are very human, and make us laugh and enjoy the moment.
Physical contests are a key ingredient to modern sports. Outdoor sports like baseball and football have long been popular because they require players to be in good shape, able to run and throw hard, and to hit a baseball or a ball out of a stadium or into the gaps between bases. Likewise, bowling is a huge game that requires incredible balance and agility from its bowlers. The same can be said for soccer, tennis, and lacrosse. Sports that require heavy equipment and use the body in unique ways are very compelling to watch and interesting to watch athletes do.
Modern sports also require players to have certain characteristics. It’s common to see people wearing helmets and padding to prevent injury during physical activities. Today’s modern athletes train with an intensity and drive to improve their skills and game-day results. Athletes compete not only to win, but also to be best. They train with the added pressure of winning the race, as well as competing against a much greater opponent.
In the end, we can look back at the origins of sports. First humans competed for survival, but then started to develop complex tools and games to make themselves more successful. Eventually, sports took over and helped human beings survive, thrive and find other types of happiness. The differences between now and back in the “good old days” when humans were cavemen is that today’s athletes train rigorously, endure injury and heat exhaustion, and even lose their lives – but they do so in a controlled and safe environment.