With the 50th Super Bowl being aired around the world this Sunday, we thought we'd take a look through the illustrious Warner Bros. Film Library and pull out some gridiron flicks to get you ready for Game Day! You'll find more than a few true stories, others that look at the business behind the game, and some for the whole family to enjoy.
Interestingly enough, there are ties to both of these year's Super Bowl teams among the ten films on our list: Michael Oher, whose story is told in The Blind Side, plays left tackle for the Carolina Panthers, and actor Dennis Quaid plays for the Denver Broncos in Everybody's All-American. How's that for not playing favorites!
As mentioned in our intro, Michael Oher who plays for the Super Bowl favorites Carolina Panthers enjoyed his finest season so far allowing only four sacks all season long. The Blind Side tells his amazing story of being adopted by a well-to-do family, the Tuohys. Sandra Bullock received the "Best Actress" Academy Award for her performance as Leigh Anne Tuohy.
Matthew McConaughey stars as real-life coach Jack Lengyel, who takes the helm of the Marshall University football team after a plane crash took the lives of 37 members of the Thundering Herd, along with five coaches, the athletic director and two dozen boosters. What Lengyel manages to do is as inspiring of a story you'll ever see.
In this 1940 bio-pic, Pat O'Brien plays the legendary Notre Dame coach Knute Rockne, who was as interested in molding his players into gentlemen as he was in winning, which he did 90 percent of the time. Future President Ronald Reagan stars as the ill-fated star George Gipp in this historical drama.
Dennis Quaid plays a college superstar who moves into the pros where he finds life much more difficult in the NFL than he did in college. The last team Quaid plays for in the film is this year's Super Bowl underdog Denver Broncos. Jessica Lange co-stars as Quaid's college sweetheart and wife, who finds herself...as her husband slowly loses himself.
Loosely based on the NFL Player's Strike of 1987, this comedy stars Keanu Reeves as a washed-up quarterback who gets a chance to play in the NFL with "replacement" players. Gene Hackman is the coach who is brought back to lead the fictional Washington Sentinels by the team's owner Jack Warden.
Director Oliver Stone will never be accused of being a subtle filmmaker and Any Given Sunday is no exception. This is in-your-face, over-the-top gridiron flick takes a look at all aspects of professional football, from the action on the field to the business off it. The impressive ensemble cast includes Al Pacino, Dennis Quaid (in his second football film on our list), James Woods, Jamie Foxx and Cameron Diaz.
This 1949 drama was way ahead of its time as it took a look at professional football and the politics and money behind it. Victor Mature is a star quarterback whose secret medical condition could kill him if he continues to play. The fine cast includes Lucille Ball and Lizabeth Scott. The then-Los Angeles Rams are featured throughout.
Bruce Willis and Damon Wayans play a former Secret Service agent and disgraced football star who end up uncovering corruption in professional sports that leads to murder.
For a much lighter view of the celluloid pigskin, Little Giants stars Rick Moranis and Ed O'Neill as brothers with little in common who become opposing coaches in pee-wee football league. This one is fun for the whole family!
And last but not least, in this 1943 fish-out-of-water comedy Mickey Rooney plays a high school football star (just go with it!) who dreams of playing for Notre Dame and then on to the pros. But when his mother marries an Englishman, Rooney must move across the ocean where no one has even heard of football.