In the Hands of the Gods

2007

In the Hands of the Gods

Critics Consensus

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85%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 13

83%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 569

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Movie Info

If the rabid cult following generated by World Cup soccer has blossomed throughout the United States in recent decades - affording players luxuries and recognition long-imagined untenable for "footballers" - the team members of the mid-lower level leagues, by contrast, haven't yet gleaned like privileges, and must typically scrounge around for fame, recognition, and suitable monetary recompense to continue pursuing their love of the game. Such is the plight afflicting the five young men at the heart of Gabe Turner and Benjamin Turner's documentary In the Hands of the Gods. Sami Hall Bassam, Jeremy Lynch, Paul 'Woody' Wood, Danny Robinson and Mike 'Mikey' Fisher find themselves thrust together, for the first time, on the same soccer team; their differing personalities threaten to pull them in opposite directions, but they feel bound by a shared idolization of Argentine soccer demigod Diego Maradona. The common interest propels the young men to the United States, where they hope to draw an adequate fanbase, generate substantial monies by exhibiting their skills, and use that money to travel to South America for an impromptu meeting with Maradona - hoping, without saying so directly, that a simple encounter with him will cause some of his inherent magic and success to "rub off" on them. Unfortunately, while the team makes it to the U.S., conflicts soon erupt between the players, thanks in no small part to the plight of sharing small living quarters as they travel. Yet the possibility of a meeting with Maradona grows increasingly probable, first when the group raises enough money to send two of its members to Argentina, then when the media latches onto the story and opens the door for the remainder to follow.

Cast

Critic Reviews for In the Hands of the Gods

All Critics (13) | Top Critics (6) | Fresh (11) | Rotten (2)

  • Certainly the story's climax in Buenos Aires is unexpected, yet many scenes resemble staged reality TV moments: group hugs, tears, mumbled monologues about overcoming obstacles.

    September 14, 2007 | Full Review…
  • This trip rapidly becomes more about how they interact rather than their gravity defying ball.

    September 14, 2007 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

    Andrew Pulver

    Guardian
    Top Critic
  • If ever there was a film that celebrated the joy of existence, the heady thrill of scaling a seemingly insurmountable challenge, it's this shambling documentary.

    September 14, 2007 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

    Wendy Ide

    Times (UK)
    Top Critic
  • Lest we think that all youths in sportswear are out to mug us, energetic documentary In the Hands of the Gods shows there are at least five British boys in hoodies who've got something positive to do.

    September 14, 2007 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

    Laura Bushell

    BBC.com
    Top Critic
  • An absolute pleasure from beginning to end.

    September 14, 2007 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • The film's teary-eyed conclusion is clearly intended to have you punching the air in elation, but the message it delivers will actually leave you feeling quite cold.

    September 14, 2007 | Rating: 2/6 | Full Review…

    David Jenkins

    Time Out
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for In the Hands of the Gods

  • Jun 22, 2008
    Cool docu-drama come teen entrepreneurs hitting the football bug across america to eventually meet their hero. Well done
    Alexander W Super Reviewer

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