BY MITCH TURNER
Australians will soon be able to enjoy live sport from the safety of their couch.
The AFL season is set to resume on June 11, with the fixture expected to be announced in the coming days.
The NRL season will relaunch on Thursday night, with the Parramatta Eels taking on the Brisbane Broncos at Suncorp Stadium.
Luckily, there are hundreds of sports movies to enjoy before live sport resumes, and below are five of the very best.
#1 The Blind Side
Actors in this film include Hollywood A-lister Sandra Bullock, who won an Oscar for her portrayal of Leigh-Anne Tuohy, and Quinton Aaron as former professional American football left tackle Michael Oher.
The Blind Side is much more a story of Oher and Tuohy’s courage, loyalty and sacrifice than it is about Oher’s God-given talent for football.
The biopic was nominated for Best Picture at the 2010 Academy Awards. Its social commentary on socio-economic divide, race and religion in the United States continues to be of remarkable relevance over a decade after its release.
#2 Remember the Titans
Sticking to the theme of race and American football, Remember the Titans is considered one of the best sports movies among fans. It is based on the true story of T.C. Williams High School - the first school in Alexandra, Virginia to integrate black and white students.
The story revolves around their school football team, the Titans. The team has to overcome everything they have learned from their families and wider communities about race and segregation to come together and win the state championship.
Starring Denzel Washington alongside Will Patton, the film is an important reminder of the power of the human spirit in overcoming adversity and hardship in pursuit of a common goal.
The film also has an excellent soundtrack which encapsulates the era it is set in and adds to the emotional impact of the plot at key moments. It includes such songs as Marvin Gaye’s Ain’t No Mountain High Enough and Bob Dylan’s A Hard Rain’s a-Gonna Fall.
#3 The Final Quarter
The Final Quarter is a biopic about the end of Adam Goode’s illustrious AFL career. Goodes was the recipient of a torrent of abuse from the oppositions’ fans on a weekly basis, ultimately leading to his premature retirement.
On their website, the film creators categorise the documentary as “an opportunity to reconsider what happened on and off the football field”. The film facilitates discussion about whether Goodes was pushed away from the iconic sport as a result of Australia’s underlying racist attitudes towards outspoken Indigenous Australians.
It is a fantastic throwback for anyone looking for a deeper meaning to one of the AFL’s darkest moments.
#4 Space Jam
Space Jam is a light-hearted comedy starring Michael Jordan in a live-action/animated crossover.
The movie presents a fictional account of the intervening period between Jordan’s retirement from professional basketball in 1993 and his comeback in 1995.
While the film is primarily aimed at younger children, older age brackets will certainly get a nostalgia kick out of seeing their favourite cartoon characters, such as Bugs Bunny, alongside famous NBA players from yesteryear.
Bill Murray’s hilariously odd supporting role as himself only contributes to the star-power of the film.
This award-winning movie is an example of brains triumphing brawn. Based on a true story, Billy Beane (portrayed by Brad Pitt) is a former general manager of the Oakland Athletics Baseball team and pairs up with Peter Brand (portrayed by Jonah Hill) to create a radical new method for assessing a player’s value.
The star-studded film encapsulates the rise of analytics in a world of modern sport. The use of statistics and metrics ahead of intuition has become widespread across an array of professional sports. This was primarily a result of Beane and Brand’s unbreakable belief in their idea, and incredible persistence in following it through to achieve their goal.
Moneyball is a terrific retelling of those events.