Football movies. Not a classic genre. Nor a classic theme for a Christmas movie. Anyone rush out to see 2008’s Soccer Mom? Or maybe The Game of Their Lives, the classic story of the 1950 World Cup upset when the United States defeated England 1-0? Unfortunately some of us may have endured Sly Stalone & Michael Cane’s Victory, of which sportsinmovies.com said “This world war II themed classic is ideal for the sincere soccer fan” (as opposed to the sincere movie fan, we’re guessing).
But Alty Film Club doesn’t get misled by conventional thinking, so even though Next Goal Wins is indeed a “soccer” movie, that didn’t put us off giving it more detailed consideration. In fact, when searching for an inspired choice for our Christmas movie, we were intrigued and ultimately persuaded when Mark Kermode (not a fan of the football) said it was the first and last time he’d ever punched the air because someone hit the back of the net.
And here we have it. Possibly the first time in the history of cinema that a film club has chosen a football movie with a fa’afafine* star for its Christmas showing.
Well we really didn’t think you wanted Bruce Willis in his vest.
Our Christmas showing is the upbeat and charming documentary, Next Goal Wins (15), and we think you’ll love it.
* A recognized identity/role since at least the early 20th century in Samoan society, and some theorize an integral part of traditional Samoan culture, fa’afafine are male at birth, and explicitly embody both masculine and feminine gender traits, fashioned in a way unique to this part of the world.