Life on and off the waters of the Wood River Valley
Best Hockey Movies
A Top 10 lineup of hockey films
IN WHAT SEEMED LIKE A STORY only Hollywood could tell, last spring the Los Angeles Kings barely made the NHL play-offs, but then went on to win their first Stanley Cup in convincing fashion—and they did so with an American-born goalie to boot. Since the Cup will reside in the filmmaking capitol of the world for the foreseeable future (NHL owners and players are fighting about money—again!—and no games are being played), here’s one former puckhead’s Top 10 lineup of the best hockey movies ever.
10: Mystery, Alaska (1999)
A bunch of small town, pond hockey playing buddies get their day on the ice with the New York Rangers. The great Phil Esposito and Barry “The Mullet” Melrose make cameos.
Best quote: “This is hockey, OK? It's not rocket surgery.”
9: The Love Guru (2008)
Any movie starring Canadian Mike Myers is usually good for at least a few laughs, even when he's only making fun of Deepak Chopra. The beautiful Jessica Alba stars as well and Justin Timberlake helps save the movie by playing a perfectly cocky French Canadian-style (see: Patrick Roy) goalie.
Best quote: “Don't look at me with that tone of voice or I will punch you in the shirt!”
8: Strange Brew: The Adventures of Bob & Doug McKenzie (1983)
This movie has almost nothing to do with hockey, except for the fact that most hockey fans love the antics of this beer-swilling duo of Canadian brothers. [Be warned, watching this movie may cause uncontrollable urges to pound swill beer.]
Best quote: “The power of the force has stopped you, you hosers!”
7: The Tooth Fairy (2012) starring Dewayne “the Rock” Johnson & Idol of the Crowds (1937) starring John Wayne
Two of the toughest guys to ever make movies look about as natural on ice skates as drunken elephants do. Nonetheless, these films each have their own appeal to hockey fans and help share the joy of the sport with movie fans in hockey-less places like Mexico, southern Mississippi and, currently, every major city in North America.
Best quote from Idol of the Crowds: “Okay farmer, you sure can take it. And you sure can dish it out!”
Best quote from Tooth Fairy: "Did you play for years without a helmet? It's like your brain is in the penalty box."
6: The Mighty Ducks trilogy (1992, 1996, 1997)
This kid friendly, feel good trilogy helped make hockey popular with America’s youth and when the new NHL team in Anaheim adopted the name, the Mighty Ducks, in 1993, its merchandise immediately became one of the top selling lines in professional sports.
Best Quote: “And when the wind blows hard and the sky is black—ducks fly together!”
5: Les Chiefs (2004)
This funny, raw and occasionally depressing documentary about the real life “Chiefs” who play outside Montreal is ,amazingly enough, even crazier than the fake “Chiefs” from “Slap Shot” fame.
Best Quote: “Have you ever seen a beating like that. I mean, that was brutal … We just stomped them!”
4: Goon (2011)
Based on the life of a former minor league goon, Goon is a Gordie Howe Hat Trick sort of movie: proper hockey violence, plenty of humor and even offers a demented love story.
Best Quote: “Hi there, I’m Eva. I dig hockey players.”
3: Youngblood (1986)
Starring some young actors who would go on to become Hollywood legends (Rob Lowe, Patrick Swayze and Keanu Reeves), Youngblood is the rugged story of an American kid trying to make it big in Canada’s national pastime.
Best Quote: “You can learn to punch in the barn, but you gotta learn to survive on the ice.”
2: Miracle (2004)
The incredible and heartwarming story of the 1980 US Olympic hockey team, also known as the “Miracle on Ice,” after TV announcer Al Michaels so famously said, “Do you believe in miracles? YES!” (Listen to that call on Youtube.) The squad, full of unheralded college hockey players shocked the world by ending team Russia’s run of taking gold at every Winter Games since 1964.
Best Quote: “I'm sick and tired of hearing about what a great hockey team the Soviets have. Screw 'em. This is your time. Now go out there and take it!”
1: Slap Shot (1977)
You know how you can tell a real hockey fan besides the obvious (ie: sporting “hockey hair” aka a “Kentucky waterfall,” "mullet” or “mudflap”)? They get the reference,“Puttin’ on the foil!” Even people who don’t care for hockey get a kick out of this hockey spoof starring Paul Newman and the infamous “Hanson brothers," in whose honor we'll offer up three best quotes from Slap Shot.
Best quote #1: “The fans are standing up to them! The security guards are standing up to them! The peanut vendors are standing up to them! And by golly, if I could get down there, I'd be standing up to them!”
Best quote #2: “Here's a name for you nostalgia fans: Clarence 'Screaming Buffalo' Swamptown. I'll never forget an exclusive interview in which Swamptown revealed that he calls his hockey stick the 'Big Tomahawk,' and he usually refers to the opposing players as 'the little scalps.'"
Best Quote #3: "Oh this young man has had a very trying rookie season, with the litigation, the notoriety, his subsequent deportation to Canada and that country's refusal to accept him, well, I guess that's more than most 21-year-olds can handle ... Ogie Ogilthorpe!”