Best Football Movies | Moviefone

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Best Football Movies of All Time.

Best Football Movies of All Time.

“Are you ready for some Football?”

Super Bowl LVIII is scheduled for Sunday, February 11th and it promises to be an unforgettable game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Kansas City Chiefs.

However,  if you still need your football fix, Moviefone has compiled a list of 30 of the best football movies of all time for you to watch after the game.

These football movies cover what happens both on and off the field, and best of all, every movie here is streaming right now, so you can get started watching any of them immediately.

Let’s begin!


Quinton Aaron and Sandra Bullock in 'The Blind Side.'

(L to R) Quinton Aaron and Sandra Bullock in ‘The Blind Side.’ Photo: Warner Bros. Pictures.

The story of Michael Oher (Quinton Aaron) a homeless and traumatized boy who became an All American football player and first round NFL draft pick with the help of a caring woman (Sandra Bullock) and her family


Zachary Levi in 'American Underdog.'

Zachary Levi in ‘American Underdog.’ Photo: Lionsgate.

American Underdog tells the inspirational true story of Kurt Warner (Zachary Levi), who went from a stockboy at a grocery store to a two-time NFL MVP, Super Bowl champion, and Hall of Fame quarterback. The film centers on Warner’s unique story and years of challenges and setbacks that could have derailed his aspirations to become an NFL player – but just when his dreams seemed all but out of reach, it is only with the support of his wife, Brenda (Anna Paquin) and the encouragement of his family, coaches, and teammates that Warner perseveres and finds the strength to show the world the champion that he already is. American Underdog is an uplifting story that demonstrates that anything is possible when you have faith, family and determination.


28. ‘Radio‘ (2003)

Cuba Gooding Jr. and Ed Harris in 'Radio.'

(L to R) Cuba Gooding Jr. and Ed Harris in ‘Radio.’ Photo: Sony Pictures Releasing.

High school football coach Harold Jones (Ed Harris) befriends Radio (Cuba Gooding Jr.), a mentally-challenged man who becomes a student at TL Hanna High School in Anderson South Carolina. Their friendship extends over several decades where Radio transforms from a shy tormented man into an inspiration to his community.

“His courage made them champions”

72

PG1 hr 49 minOct 24th, 2003


Xzibit and Dwayne Johnson in 'Gridiron Gang.'

(L to R) Xzibit and Dwayne Johnson in ‘Gridiron Gang.’ Photo: Sony Pictures Releasing.

Under the leadership of their counselor (Dwayne Johnson), teenagers at a juvenile detention center gain selfesteem by playing football together.

“One goal. A second chance.”

70

PG-132 hr 5 minSep 15th, 2006


Tom Cruise in 'All the Right Moves.'

Tom Cruise in ‘All the Right Moves.’ Photo: 20th Century Fox.

Sensitive study of a headstrong high school football star (Tom Cruise) who dreams of getting out of his small Western Pennsylvania steel town with a football scholarship. His equally ambitious coach (Craig T. Nelson) aims at a college position resulting in a clash which could crush the players dreams.

All the Right Moves

“He has everything at stake He cant afford to lose Hes got to make all the right moves”

58

R1 hr 31 minOct 21st, 1983

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Snoop Dogg as Jaycen "2 J's" Jennings and Mike Epps as Kareem in director Charles Stone III's 'The Underdoggs,' an Amazon MGM Studios film.

(L to R) Snoop Dogg as Jaycen “2 J’s” Jennings and Mike Epps as Kareem in director Charles Stone III’s ‘The Underdoggs,’ an Amazon MGM Studios film. Photo credit: Jacob Kemp. © 2024 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Inc. All Rights Reserved. An Amazon MGM Studios film. Photo credit: Jacob Kemp. © 2024 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Jaycen ‘Two Js’ Jennings (Snoop Dogg) is a washed-up former pro football star who has hit rock bottom. When he is sentenced to do community service coaching the Underdoggs, an unruly pee-wee football team in his hometown, he sees it mostly as an opportunity to rebuild his public image. But in the process, he may just turn his life around and rediscover his love of the game.

“From blunts to runts.”

61

R1 hr 36 minJan 26th, 2024

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Burt Reynolds in 2005's 'The Longest Yard.'

(Center) Burt Reynolds in 2005’s ‘The Longest Yard.’ Photo: Paramount Pictures.

Pro quarterback Paul Crewe (Adam Sandler) and former college champion and coach Nate Scarboro (Burt Reynolds) are doing time in the same prison and are asked to put together a team of inmates to take on the guards. Crewe enlists the help of Scarboro to coach the inmates to victory in a football game fixed to turn out quite another way.

“If you cant get out get even”

66

PG131 hr 53 minMay 19th, 2005


James Caan and Craig Sheffer in 'The Program.'

(L to R) James Caan and Craig Sheffer in ‘The Program.’ Photo: Buena Vista Pictures.

Several players from different backgrounds try to cope with the pressures of playing football at a major university. Each deals with the pressure differently some turn to drinking others to drugs and some to studying.

The Program

“Pressure surrounds them Competition divides them Glory unites them”

63

R1 hr 52 minSep 24th, 1993


James Van Der Beek and Jon Voight in 'Varsity Blues.'

(L to R) James Van Der Beek and Jon Voight in ‘Varsity Blues.’ Photo: Paramount Pictures.

In small-town Texas, high school football is a religion, 17-year-old schoolboys carry the hopes of an entire community onto the gridiron every Friday night. When star quarterback Lance Harbor (Paul Walker) suffers an injury, the Coyotes are forced to regroup under the questionable leadership of John Moxon (James Van Der Beek), a second-string quarterback with a slightly irreverent approach to the game.


Kurt Russell and Robin Williams in 'The Best of Times.'

(L to R) Kurt Russell and Robin Williams in ‘The Best of Times.’ Photo: Universal Pictures.

A smalltown loser (Robin Williams) determines to have one more shot at the big time by winning a football game.

The Best of Times

“A comedy about life hope and getting even”

56

PG131 hr 44 minJan 31st, 1986


Burt Reynolds in 1974's 'The Longest Yard.'

Burt Reynolds in 1974’s ‘The Longest Yard.’ Photo: Paramount Pictures.

A football player-turned-convict (Burt Reynolds) organizes a team of inmates to play against a team of prison guards. His dilemma is that the warden (Eddie Albert) asks him to throw the game in return for an early release but he is also concerned about the inmates lack of self-esteem.

The Longest Yard

“Its survival of the fiercest and funniest”

68

R2 hr 1 minAug 21st, 1974


Adam Sandler in 'The Waterboy.'

Adam Sandler in ‘The Waterboy.’ Photo: Buena Vista Pictures Distribution.

Bobby Boucher (Adam Sandler) is a water boy for a struggling college football team. The coach (Henry Winkler) discovers Boucher’s hidden rage makes him a tackling machine whose bone-crushing power might vault his team into the playoffs.

The Waterboy

“You can mess with him But dont mess with his water”

61

PG131 hr 30 minNov 6th, 1998


Tom Cruise in 'Jerry Maguire.'

Tom Cruise in ‘Jerry Maguire.’ Photo: Sony Pictures Releasing.

Jerry Maguire (Tom Cruise) used to be a typical sports agent willing to do just about anything he could to get the biggest possible contracts for his clients plus a nice commission for himself. Then one day he suddenly has second thoughts about what he’s really doing. When he voices these doubts he ends up losing his job and all of his clients save Rod Tidwell (Cuba Gooding Jr.) an egomaniacal football player.

“Everybody loved him… Everybody disappeared. The journey is everything.”

70

R2 hr 19 minDec 6th, 1996

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Mark Wahlberg as Vince Papale in 'Invincible'

Mark Wahlberg as Vince Papale in ‘Invincible’

As Philadelphia suffered industrial job losses in the 70s, morale wasn’t helped by the Eagles’ losing every season since 1967. Enter Vince Papale (Mark Wahlberg), a fairly unusual football prospect who became symbolic of the city’s resilience.

Papale hadn’t played football in college (although he had played some semi-pro ball), and was much older than the average rookie. But in 1976, new coach Dick Vermeil (Greg Kinnear) is hamstrung by a lack of draft picks, so he opens Eagles tryouts, and a Philadelphia legend is born.

Wahlberg lends a gritty determination to his portrayal of Papale, a Philly local encouraged by his friends to try out for the Eagles. And Kinnear’s Vermiel is a talented, confident coach, but one that’s driven to extreme measure to build a team. In the end, this hits all the notes of a classic underdog sports story, but it does that so well that even though you know what’s going to happen, you’re still happy to see it.

“Dreams are not lived on the sidelines”

70

PG1 hr 45 minAug 25th, 2006


Alec Baldwin (left) and Will Smith (center) in 'Concussion'

Alec Baldwin (left) and Will Smith (center) in ‘Concussion’

Writer/director Peter Landseman takes a serious look at the physical toll professional football takes on players in this 2015 drama. Will Smith stars as neuropathologist Dr. Bennet Omalu, the man who discovered chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative disease affecting NFL players and other athletes.

Smith’s Omalu is soft-spoken but fiercely persistent as he tries to get the NFL to acknowledge and address the health crisis he’s unearthed. The discovery of CTE leads to a Congressional investigation and lawsuits from hundreds of players against the NFL, and the film gives us a sobering look at Omalu’s work and the league’s unwillingness to accept his findings.

“Even Legends Need a Hero”

71

PG132 hr 3 minDec 25th, 2015


John Krasinski and George Clooney in 'Leatherheads'

John Krasinski and George Clooney in ‘Leatherheads’

Director George Clooney takes on the chaotic early days of professional football in this story (very) loosely based on Harold “Red” Grange’s signing by the Chicago Bears in 1925. Clooney stars as Jimmy “Dodge” Connelly, the captain of the struggling Duluth Bulldogs. In an effort to turn the team around, Dodge signs Carter “The Bullet” Rutherford (John Krasinski) a star player and decorated WWI veteran.

The movie is as loopy as the brawling, trick play-filled style we see on the field, with Renee Zellweger as the sports reporter that’s caught the eye of both Connelly and Rutherford. Clooney’s direction combines screwball romantic comedy with chaotic, free-for-all football, giving us a light look at how the game was played way back when.

“If Love Is a Game Wholl Make the First Pass”

58

PG131 hr 54 minMar 24th, 2008


Necessary Roughness football movie

Paramount

When the Texas Southern Armadillos football team is disqualified for cheating and poor grades, the University is forced to pick from a team that actually goes to school. Will they even win a single game?

This 1991 comedy is to football movies what ‘Major League‘ is to Baseball movies. A ridiculous yet hilarious comedy, the movie has an eclectic cast that includes Scott Bakula, Hector Elizondo, Jason Bateman, Sinbad, and supermodel Kathy Ireland.

Necessary Roughness

“This gang of loners loonies and losers are about to become something theyve never been before a team”

55

PG131 hr 48 minSep 27th, 1991


(L to R) Mac Davis and Nick Nolte in 'North Dallas Forty'

(L to R) Mac Davis and Nick Nolte in ‘North Dallas Forty’

Loosely (very loosely) based on the Dallas Cowboys of the 70s, ‘North Dallas Forty’ is a story of a pair of football stars, wide receiver Phil Elliot (Nick Nolte), a jaded veteran, and quarterback Seth Maxwell (Mac Davis) who hasn’t yet tired of the hard partying off the field.

Since this is the 70s, sex, alcohol, and painkillers are standard elements of the ubiquitous parties off the field, but Nolte’s world-weary Elliot may have finally had enough. ‘North Dallas Forty’ gives us a glimpse of the freewheeling past of pro football, far before every aspect of players and teams were examined by social media and the 24-hour news cycle.

North Dallas Forty

“Wait till you see the weird part”

66

R1 hr 59 minAug 3rd, 1979


Kevin Costner (center) and Jennifer Garner (right) in 'Draft Day'

Kevin Costner (center) and Jennifer Garner (right) in ‘Draft Day’

Where most sports movies make sure to include as much gameplay as possible, ‘Draft Day’ does something different. The film instead focuses on a day in the life of the fictional general manager, Sonny Weaver Jr. (Kevin Costner) of the Cleveland Browns. Weaver is under pressure on the day of the NFL Draft because the team owner (Frank Langella) wants Weaver to “make a splash,” but Weaver has his doubts about a highly-rated prospect who may be on the table.

Meanwhile, his personal life is taking up some of his headspace; his girlfriend/co-worker Ali (Jennifer Garner) is pregnant, and Weaver has been arguing with his mother (Ellen Burstyn). Weaver spends a chaotic day navigating through the demands of the team owner, the needs of the team and the coaching staff, and his fraught personal life while he embarks on some complicated horse trading of current and future draft picks. There’s a satisfaction in watching someone that’s good at their job doing that job well, and ‘Draft Day’ delivers that in spades.

“The greatest victories dont always happen on the field”

67

PG131 hr 50 minApr 11th, 2014


Rita Moreno plays Maura, Jane Fonda plays Trish, Sally Field plays Betty, and Lily Tomlin plays Lou in '80 For Brady' from Paramount Pictures.

(L to R) Rita Moreno plays Maura, Jane Fonda plays Trish, Sally Field plays Betty, and Lily Tomlin plays Lou in ’80 For Brady’ from Paramount Pictures.

Inspired by the true story of four best friends (Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Rita Moreno and Sally Field) living life to the fullest when they take a wild trip to the 2017 Super Bowl LI to see their hero Tom Brady play.

“Best friends get into the best kind of trouble.”

66

PG-131 hr 38 minFeb 3rd, 2023

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We Are Marshall football movie

Warner Bros. Pictures

Maverick old-guard coach Jimmy McGinty (Gene Hackman) is hired in the wake of a players’ strike to help the Washington Sentinels advance to the playoffs. But that impossible dream hinges on whether his replacements can hunker down and do the job, including washed up Quarterback Shane Falco (Keanu Reeves). So, McGinty dusts off his secret dossier of ex-players who never got a chance (or screwed up the one they were given) and knits together a bad-dream team of guys who just may give the Sentinels their title shot.

The movie is loosely based on the actual 1987 NFL strike, where “scab” players replaced the professionals. While it was never going to win any awards, ‘The Replacements’ is a really fun football comedy that not only features a commanding performance from Keanu Reeves, but also one of Gene Hackman’s final onscreen appearances.

The Replacements

“Throw the ball Catch the girl Keep it simple”

66

PG131 hr 58 minAug 7th, 2000


James Caan and Billy Dee Williams in 'Brian's Song'

James Caan and Billy Dee Williams in ‘Brian’s Song’

‘Brian’s Song’ tells the true story of the deep friendship between Brian Piccolo (James Caan) and Gale Sayers (Billy Dee Williams), both rookie wide receivers for the Chicago Bears. Although they eventually get the chance to play at the same time, with Piccolo now at fullback, Piccolo’s cancer diagnosis keeps him off the field, cutting short their time together.

Williams’ Sayers isn’t afraid to be emotional with his teammates about the loss of his friend, making this film one of the iconic portrayals of male friendship. Like ‘Rudy,’ this football film is all but guaranteed to get tears out of even the most stoic of men.

72

G1 hr 13 minNov 30th, 1971


Heaven Can Wait football movie

Paramount

Joe Pendleton (Warren Beatty) is a quarterback preparing to lead his team to the Super Bowl when he is almost killed in an accident. An overanxious angel plucks him to heaven only to discover that he wasn’t ready to die, and that his body has been cremated. A new body must be found, and that of a recently-murdered millionaire is chosen. His wife and accountant—the murderers—are confused by this development, as he buys the L.A. Rams in order to once again quarterback them into the Super Bowl.

While its not a straight-forward football movie, this 1979 romantic comedy certainly has a lot of football in it. The conclusion of the movie take place at the Super Bowl, and was actually filmed during halftime of a San Diego Chargers vs. Los Angeles Rams game at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in 1977. Several real-life NFL players appear in the movie including Deacon Jones, Les Josephson, Jack T. Snow, Jim Boeke, and Charles Cowan, while sportscaster Dick Enberg also appears as himself.

Heaven Can Wait

“Joe Pendleton the only guy who ever raised Hell about going to Heaven”

66

PG1 hr 41 minJun 28th, 1978


7. ‘Wildcats’ (1986)

Wildcats football movie

Warner Bros. Pictures

Molly (Goldie Hawn) is a high school track coach who knows just as much about football as anyone else on the planet. When a football coach’s position becomes vacant, she applies for the job, despite snickers from fellow staff members and her former husband.

Directed by ‘Fletch‘s Michael Ritchie, ‘Wildcats’ is a must-see 80’s movie and features one of Goldie Hawn’s best performances. The movie also features early performances from ‘White Men Can’t Jump‘ stars Wesley Snipes and Woody Harrelson, and future ‘Forrest Gump‘ co-star Mykelti Willamson.

Wildcats

“Her dream was to coach high school football Her nightmare was Central High”

63

R1 hr 46 minFeb 14th, 1986


We Are Marshall football movie

Warner Bros. Pictures

When a plane crash claims the lives of members of the Marshall University football team and some of its fans, the team’s new coach (Matthew McConaughey) and his surviving players try to keep the football program alive.

Based on a true story, ‘We Are Marshall’ is less about Football and more about how the game affects the people living in this small community. While it technically predates his “McConaissance” by a few years, the actor gives an excellent and energized performance. The movie also features future Marvel actors Anthony Mackie (Captain America: Civil War), Kate Mara (Fantastic Four) and January Jones (X-Men: First Class) in early roles.

“From the ashes we rose”

69

PG2 hr 4 minDec 12th, 2006


5. ‘Rudy‘ (1993)

Rudy football movie

TriStar Pictures

Rudy (Sean Austin) grew up in a steel mill town where most people ended up working, but wanted to play football at Notre Dame instead. There were only a couple of problems. His grades were a little low, his athletic skills were poor, and he was only half the size of the other players. But he had the drive and the spirit of five people and has set his sights upon joining the team.

‘Rudy’ is the ultimate underdog story and a quintessential football movie. Based on a true story, the film features a career-best performance from Sean Austin in the title role, and early performances from future ‘Swingers‘ stars Jon Favreau and Vince Vaughn.

“Its not the size of the dog in the fight Its the size of the fight in the dog”

74

PG1 hr 54 minOct 13th, 1993


Friday Night Lights football movie

Universal Pictures

A small, turbulent town in Texas obsesses over their high school football team to an unhealthy degree. When the star tailback, Boobie Miles (Derek Luke), is seriously injured during the first game of the season, all hope is lost, and the town’s dormant social problems begin to flare up. It is left to the inspiring abilities of new coach Gary Gaines (Billy Bob Thornton) to instill in the other team members — and, by proxy, the town itself — a sense of self-respect and honor.

Directed by Peter Berg, this is the film that inspired the phenomenally successful TV series of the same name. Billy Bob Thornton is fantastic as Coach Gary Gains, and is surrounded by a supporting cast that includes Lucas Black, Garrett Hedlund, Amber Heard, and Connie Britton, who would also go on to appear in the TV adaption.

“Hope comes alive on Friday nights”

69

PG131 hr 58 minOct 8th, 2004


The Last Boy Scout football movie

Warner Bros. Pictures

When the girl that detective Joe Hallenback (Bruce Willis) is protecting gets murdered, the boyfriend (Damon Wayans) of the murdered girl attempts to investigate and solve the case. What they discover is that there is deep seated corruption going on between a crooked politician and the owner of a pro football team.

While it’s really a buddy cop comedy, ‘The Last Boy Scout’ does take place in the world of professional football. However, you won’t recognize any of the teams featured in the movie as the NFL refused to work with the production due to the content of the film.

Willis gives a strong post-‘Die Hard‘ performance, while Wayans is just coming off of his success on ‘In Living Color.’ The movie also features Halle Berry in an early role playing Wayans’ girlfriend.

The Last Boy Scout

“Everyone had counted them out But theyre about to get back in the game”

68

R1 hr 45 minDec 12th, 1991

Showtimes & Tickets


Remember the Titans football movie

Walt Disney Pictures

After leading his football team to 15 winning seasons, coach Bill Yoast (Will Patton) is demoted and replaced by Herman Boone (Denzel Washington) – tough, opinionated and as different from the beloved Yoast as he could be. The two men learn to overcome their differences and turn a group of hostile young men into champions.

Based on a true story, the movie has become a modern classic, thanks in large part to Oscar-winner Denzel Washington’s commanding performance. Produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and directed by Boaz Yakin, the movie also features Ryan Gosling, Kate Bosworth, and Hayden Panettiere in early roles.

Remember the Titans

“History is written by the winners”

76

PG1 hr 53 minSep 23rd, 2000


Jamie Foxx, Al Pacino, and Dennis Quaid in 'Any Given Sunday'

Jamie Foxx, Al Pacino, and Dennis Quaid in ‘Any Given Sunday’

Oliver Stone’s intensity as a filmmaker served him well as the director and co-writer of this story about a fictional professional football league. And considering how ‘Any Given Sunday’ takes on some of the uglier aspects of pro ball, it’s not a surprise that the NFL wouldn’t allow Stone to use any real-life team logos or stadiums.

Al Pacino plays a long-time, respected coach under pressure for missing the playoffs last season, and Dennis Quaid plays the veteran quarterback, determined to make a comeback (although his body may not be up for it). Soon we see Jamie Foxx as “Steamin” Willie Beaman, an unexpected replacement quarterback with a chip on his shoulder.

Sparks fly between these three and almost everyone else involved in the team, including the team owner and general manager (Cameron Diaz), the unethical team doctor (James Woods) that keeps players on the field at all costs, and a star running back (LL Cool J) more focused on his own incentive clauses than the team’s successes.

Rounding out the cast are Lauren Holly, Ann-Margret, Aaron Eckhart, Matthew Modine, John C. McGinley, Elizabeth Berkeley and NFL veterans Lawrence Taylor and Jim Brown. Stone’s approach is as much a commentary on professional football as ‘Wall Street‘ had cynically addressed high finance and ‘Natural Born Killers‘ riffed on media fascination with serial killers. Bone-crunching game sequences and fiery dialogue help ‘Any Given Sunday’ capture the increasing intensity of both the games and the business around professional football.

 

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