Rocky wins over more than a quarter of film fans (28 per cent) in this classic rags-to-riches American dream story pulling no punches to claim the top spot as the nation’s greatest sporting movie.
To celebrate the release of biographical Moneyball starring Brad Pitt on Friday, the boxing legend came out on top in a poll by LOVEFiLM – Europe’s largest subscription service streaming movies and TV episodes over the internet and sending DVDs by post – who asked over 1,000 film fans who should win gold.
Sliding in to take second place (15 per cent) is Cool Runnings with comedy class act John Candy as ex-bobsleigh champion who takes four friends and whips them into the first ever Jamaican Olympic Bobsleigh Team – with slip-ups and scrapes from start to finish line.
Fighting its way into third place is Clint Eastwood-directed Million Dollar Baby with eight per cent of film fans voting for this Academy Award winning movie about an under-appreciated boxing trainer who takes on an amateur female boxer (Hilary Swank).
The third boxing film in our poll and in fourth place with seven per cent of the vote is Scorsese-directed Raging Bull starring a young Robert de Niro as self-destructive fighter Jake La Motta living life against the ropes. The Wrestler slams into joint fourth place (seven per cent) in this Oscar nominated sports flick, which saw Mickey Rourke back to his on-screen best.
Winning Sandra Bullock an Oscar – and blonde hair – is American football tale Blind Side at six with six per cent of the votes. The true tearjerker story was a touchdown with film lovers and critics alike.
Managing seventh place (five per cent) is The Damned United featuring Michael Sheen in all his glory with a portrayal of legendary football gaffer Brian Clough and his infamous 44-day reign at Leeds United.
Joint eighth are two 2010 greats, The Fighter and Invictus with four per cent of the votes each. The former gives an early look at the boxing scene starring Hollywood heavyweights Mark Wahlberg and Christian Bale and the latter a biographical account of Nelson Mandela’s quest to unite South Africa and win the 1995 Rugby World Cup.
Scoring in tenth place (three per cent) is Escape To Victory with a tale of the beautiful game starring real-life greats Bobby Moore and Pelé.
Top Ten Greatest Sporting Movies:
1. Rocky (1976) – 28 per cent
2. Cool Runnings (1993) – 15 per cent
3. Million Dollar Baby (2004) – eight per cent
=4. Raging Bull (1980) – seven per cent
=4. The Wrestler (2008) – seven per cent
6. The Blind Side (2009) – six per cent
7. The Damned United (2009) – five per cent
=8. The Fighter (2001) – four per cent
=8. Invictus (2001) – four per cent
10. Escape To Victory (1981) – three per cent
Other – 13 per cent
Helen Cowley, Editor of LOVEFiLM, commented:
“With the Olympics on their way and the anticipated release of Moneyball this weekend, sport is a hot topic – from living room to locker room. Whether it is football favourites, bobsleighing blunders or boxing Balboas we love to watch sporting heroes cross the finishing line in style.
“Our top ten are all winners to us, as well as some of the other sporting greats that narrowly missed out on a spot. LOVEFiLM’s streaming service now makes it easy for film – and sports – fans to enjoy flicks instantly. So avoid the crowds and cheer on your favourites from the comfort of your living room.”