I was so looking forward to this movie as I thought back to how exciting the event was when our Olympic Hockey Team beat the USSR's professional team and the pride we as Americans felt and the look of unbelief and hopelessness the Soviet team members showed after the defeat. I think all Americans will love this movie. This was a moment Sports Illustrated listed as the single greatest sports moment of the 20th century.
Seeing this movie will help you relive this great event and it also reminds you of the events going on in l980 and America's mindset during the last decade of the Cold War, to wit; the long gas lines, inflation hitting the roof, the Iranian hostage crisis, no summer olympic games and President Carter's time in office. America was looking for something to buoy us up and this talented college team handpicked by a determined coach, Herb Brooks (Kurt Russell), was the tool to help re-establish our country's pride.
The film focuses on Brooks and the sacrifices he makes, especially with his family, to fulfill a dream to make America competitive in a sport where for years they haven't even been in contention. Brooks stresses to the team members that he will be their coach but not their friend and he works them to the bone until they emerge at Lake Placid as a lean, mean fighting machine with spirit, possibly not the most talented, to take on the world's most formidable hockey organization and win.
Watching this at the time, we felt that beating the USSR was the gold medal but we still had to defeat Finland in a later game for the gold. The movie fulfills the emotion as the USA team jumps on the podium with the playing of our National Anthem. We all know what happened but watching the movie with all the action sequences you still feel like you need to pull for them to win.
Don't miss the credits at the end as this team is made up of actual hockey players, not actors, and they picture each one and tell what he actually does for a living.
I loved this movie. Pride, pride, pride, that's what you will feel. I thought Kurt Russell did an excellent job of recreating the roll of Herb Brooks.
It made me think of the great acting job he did in Tombstone as Wyatt Earp. I don't remember anyone wearing that much plaid but I guess they did.