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No consensus yet.
Raunchy, violent, and very funny, Slap Shot is ultimately set apart by a wonderful comic performance by Paul Newman.
All Critics (30)
| Top Critics (6)
| Fresh (25)
| Rotten (5)
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A sports movie? Well partially so, but besides being a fun- loving cultural memento of its time Hill's film is a pointed social commentary on the huge insatiable public demand for extravagant sensationalism. The sports part of it hardly registers at all. Newman anchors the proceedings quite nicely and, of course, the dreadnought Hanson Brothers.
Easily as fun as a barrel full of monkeys.
For me, sports movies are okay. Like all genres, they have their good ones, and their bad ones. Who would have thought that one of the best sports movies is actually an anti-sports movie? This film is this one- a nice little gem from the 70s that really exemplifies the zeitgeist of the era with it's crude language, bloody fighting, and general boorish nasty edge and nature.
The plot concerns a washed up veteran hockey and coach (who's not really good at either) who tries to take his awful, struggling minor league team and turn them around into popular winners, which he starts to do once he discovers that the audience reacts positively to goonish behavior. He's a fascinating guy to watch because the skills he lacks as a player and coach are made up for by the fact that he's a skilled con man who is good at manipulating people, especially other players.
Their team, the Charlestown Chiefs, is not the only one struggling. Besides looking at sports, the film also touches upon the current events of the time by addressing the dire situation of late 1970s industrial towns in the Northeast. The local mill is on the verge of closing, and, should that happen, the hockey team is likely to go too. This little detail is something I appreciated because it adds more to the film, but also helps cement it as a cultural timepiece, giving insight into what the world was like at that time.
So yeah, the film is dated to an extent, and the vulgarity and rawness of things aren't quite as shocking, but I still found the film fresh and eye opening because of the content. This film is undeniably a product of the 70s, and I think it's all the better as a result.
The cast are great. Paul Newman reunites with George Roy Hill (this time without Redford) and he is awesome as coach/player Reggie Dunlop. The guy is a mess, but yet, despite his attitude and actions (and the attitudes and actions of his team), you can't help but like these guys and root for them, even though you should feel otherwise. Supporting him are Strother Martin, Michael Ontkean, and tons of actual pro and minor leaguers.
Give this one a shot. It's entertaining, funny (though I don't think it was supposed to be a comedy), has wonderful music, and is a great look at the wild side of sports.
Slap Shot is one of the greatest sports comedies ever made. Starring Paul Newman in the role of Reggie Dunlop, Captain of the Charlestown Chiefs, this film set the standard for every other sports comedy that came after it. The film is full of memorable, hilarious scenes. After dwindling ticket sales, the Chiefs take on three goons by the names of the Hansons. After a while they start wining and become a household name. Slap Shot is a very memorable film because of the Hansons and all the other assorted crazy characters on the team. Slap Shot is definitely one of the genres great classics. The reason that Slap Shot has struck such a cord with fans of hockey and other audiences is because of the Hanson Brothers, I mean with every scene there in they deliver the laughs and a great time. The characters are all terrific. Aside from the Hansons a character I really like is "Killer" Carson. One scene that stands out for me is when Reggie tries to settle down for a nap and Killer calls Reggie up and says he wants the 100$ bounty that Reggie placed on an opposing players head. I personally thought it was a funny scene and one of the best of the film. Slap Shot is one of the best comedies that you can watch with friends, this film did for hockey fans what Animal House did for college students. One of the best in sports comedies, this is in a league of it's own. A well acted, hilarious ride with Reggie Dunlop, "Killer" Carson and The Hanson Brothers, Slap Shot will bring on the laughs.
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