The Workers Cup (2017) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Workers Cup (2017)

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Movie Info

When FIFA selected Qatar to host the 2022 World Cup, the petroleum-rich country used its vast and wealthy resources to begin constructing state-of-the-art stadiums and facilities utilizing millions of migrant workers. The Workers Cup follows a group of these men-from India, Kenya, Nepal, and Ghana-who, stuck in isolated camps, working arduous hours for unlivable wages, eagerly escape into a corporate-sponsored "workers welfare" soccer tournament of their own. While the tournament amounts to little more than a marketing ploy for those at the top, the laborers embrace the rare opportunity to let loose, compete, and prove themselves bona fide soccer champions. Adam Sobel's stirring and keenly observed documentary juxtaposes the freshly installed stadiums where the workers compete with the squalid and cramped corridors they return to at night. With an empathetic lens, Sobel showcases the collective willpower and humanity of men who refuse to allow trying circumstances sink their one shot at winning a tournament in the very stadiums the workers of Qatar sacrificed so much to construct.

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Critic Reviews for The Workers Cup

All Critics (9) | Top Critics (3)

It's the kind of piece that could have cut much of its soccer footage and might have worked better as a short.

January 26, 2017 | Full Review…

Sobel's inexperience with the feature-length format and the requirements of specific genres shows, with Cup constantly struggling to reconcile the horrible fate of what are essentially modern-day slaves with the aspirational side and dreams of victory ...

January 23, 2017 | Full Review…

What emerges is a nuanced, if somewhat undernourished, portrait of the poorest inhabitants of the richest country in the world.

January 20, 2017 | Full Review…

Intimately captures how fantasies of opportunities don't get to square with the realities of building the huge facilities needed...Empathetic, insightful look behind.

July 30, 2017 | Rating: 8/10 | Full Review…

It is remarkable to see people who can be so happy in the midst of miserable circumstances. That's the inspiring takeaway from The Workers Cup.

February 3, 2017 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Sobel doesn't invite us to pity these men but rather to listen to what they have to say.

February 1, 2017 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

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