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Ted Lasso to Warrior: Top 10 sports films and TV shows you can stream online

Ryan Gomez

Ryan Gomez
Jun 24, 2021

Stories about athletes and sports personalities give a unique sense of satisfaction, whether it is an underdog story or a comeback story. It is one of the reasons why there are several sports stories told in films and television. So, here is a carefully curated list of some of the best that are available on OTT platforms.

7.9OTTplay Rating
Professional sports teams have always been driven by talent, desire, fitness and the adrenaline rush given by tens of thousands of fans inside the stadiums. Their success is measured by how well they use their resources and scout the best talent. This film is a real-life account of how Billy Beane flipped the script and decided to rebuild a team on a limited budget using an innovative sabermetric system to scout players. The Oakland Athletics Baseball team under Beane, played by Brad Pitt, went on a record 20 match-winning streak using this system. The system has since been adopted by professional sports teams across the globe. The movie is an excellent account of Beane’s story to upset the established order in order to build a successful team.
7.8OTTplay Rating
Professional wrestling has lost some of its popularity this past decade. The golden era in the 80s, the attitude era in the 90s and the ruthless aggression era in the 2000s elevated pro-wrestling into mainstream recognition. However, these eras treated the women in the industry poorly. Women’s matches were the equivalent to item-songs in a Bollywood movie. This has however changed in the past decade with women like Becky Lynch headlining pay-per-views, given better storylines and have even gained more popularity than the men. Glow is a fictional television show loosely based on a women-only pro-wrestling program that broke barriers in the 80s, nearly 35 years before the WWE’s self-monikered ‘women’s revolution’. The multiple award winning TV series stars Alison Brie, from Community, Betty Gilpin, and Marc Maron as the primary cast.
Remember the Titans
8OTTplay Rating
Any movie with Denzel Washington in the lead is worth mentioning on any list. Remember the Titans however is on this list not just because it is a ‘Denzel’ film, it is here as its an emotional and heartfelt movie about a real-life black coach, Herman Boone, thrown into the deep end as the football (American football) head coach of a school in the midst of integration of black and white students in Virginia, USA in 1971. The film has remained a classic and a fan-favourite even after 20 years since its release.
7.8OTTplay Rating
A film about tragedy and redemption, Southpaw is a gritty tale about a world champion boxer trying to reclaim his life and career. Jake Gyllenhaal puts in an excellent performance as the lead to portray a broken man in need of redemption. The film also stars Rachel McAdams with yet another stunning performance. There are plenty of high-quality boxing movies made, Southpaw sets itself apart with its truly unique story.
8.5OTTplay Rating
Warrior is easily one of the best sports films ever made. In an ideal world, it would be put on the same pedestal as some of the greats like Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky. Tom Hardy, Joel Edgerton, and the legend that is Nick Nolte make up the main cast in one of the most intense and well-performed movies ever made. Tom Hardy in particular is excellent throughout in a script that is gripping for the entirety of its runtime. The story of a dysfunctional family and how two brothers end up competing in the same MMA tournament was met with critical acclaim. It was also remade into a Bollywood movie called Brothers.
Eddie the Eagle
7.8OTTplay Rating
This is a true story of Michael Edwards, nicknamed Eddie the Eagle, who represented Britain in the 1988 Winter Olympics in ski jumping, a competition that Britain did not usually participate in. The movie follows Eddie, an amateur ski jumper, who got a spot at the Olympics because he was the only participant from the country. There is no underdog overachieving story, instead, it is a story with heart and a sense of adventure. It was critically acclaimed with Taron Egerton as Eddie, supported by Hugh Jackman and Christopher Walken in supporting roles.
The Damned United
7.7OTTplay Rating
There are not many managers in British football that can be considered to be on par with Sir Alex Ferguson, but one man is widely regarded to have operated on the same level as the legendary Scotsman, and that is Brian Clough. The movie is a biographical drama about the outspoken Englishman’s meteoric rise as manager of Derby County, his intense rivalry with Leeds United and their manager Don Revie, and his short-lived and tumultuous stint as Don Revie’s replacement at Leeds United. This excellent movie is a captivating insight about a man that took relative minnows Nottingham Forest to two European Cups, called the UEFA Champions League these days.
Ted Lasso
8.2OTTplay Rating
The biggest surprise hit of 2020 was the TV show, Ted Lasso. Jason Sudeikis’s role as Ted Lasso, an American football coach who ends up as manager/head coach of a Premier League football club in England is one of the best written comedy shows in recent years. The show beautifully highlights the difference in cultures, accents and lifestyles of Americans and the British. Jason Sudeikis won a Golden Globe for Best Actor for his portrayal of the charismatic coach who has no idea whatsoever about football or soccer, as the Americans call it. The show is renewed for a second season by Apple and is expected to release on July 23rd this year.
7.9OTTplay Rating
The revival of the Rocky franchise was a massive gamble, especially considering how few of the films underwhelmed both critically and financially. Creed did not disappoint however, the story focuses on Apollo Creed’s son. Michael B Jordan plays the lead with Sylvester Stallone returning as Rocky Balboa. This is also the first film in the Rocky series not written by Sylvester Stallone, instead, it was written and directed by Black Panther director Ryan Coogler. The film was universally acclaimed and is creating its own franchise with a sequel released in 2018.
Cobra Kai
8.4OTTplay Rating
A revival of, The Karate Kid, one of the most beloved franchises from the 80s was never expected to be this good. It is possibly an idea that developed from a plot in another TV series. In an episode of How I Met Your Mother, Barney Stinson makes a very detailed argument that the real hero in The Karate Kid was actually the one depicted as the bully, William Zabka’s character, Johnny Lawrence, and not Ralph Macchio’s Daniel LaRusso. This plot point became a running theme on the show with Zabka making guest appearances as himself. Fast forward a few years, Cobra Kai debuts with Zabka’s Johnny Lawrence as the lead. The show about karate tournaments and rivalries has become a universal hit with the fourth season expected to release on Netflix.
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