130 Best Sports Movies of All Time

In the arena of the sports movie, every story can be told. The impossible underdog team that survives a brutal season into the final game. The kid who’s just starting out and the veteran being pulled back into the game, who both share the same odds: Against. Stories of the power of coming together as a selfless team, and myths of individual strength when you remove all the limits. Sports movies make us cheer, laugh, cry, and scream. They even make us think about renewing that gym membership.

We’re going all the way to the end zone with our list of the 130 Best Sports Movies of All Time, sorted by Adjusted Tomatometer from at least 25 reviews each. Just about every sport ever played is here: football (Rudy), baseball (Bull Durham), hockey (Miracle), soccer (Bend It Like Beckham), boxing (Rocky), ice skating (I, Tonya). There’s racing: by foot (Without Limits), by car (Talladega Nights), by horse (Seabiscuit). We got fictional sports (Rollerball) and sports we made up through sheer tyranny of will (Murderball). If it’s in the spirit of competition, it’s in this list. Except for sculling. Sorry, Nic.

Because this is a Best Sports Movie list, there are no TV movies (we pour one out for Brian’s Song), and nothing rated Rotten — even fan favorites like The Sandlot or Any Given Sunday. Please deal with your rage accordingly before continuing.


For the leisure, life, and love of the game, here are the 130 Best Sports Movies of All Time! (And if you’re ready to go the distance, you can purchase the movies on FandangoNow!)

Best Sports Movies
130-96 | 95-61 | 60-3131-1


Gracie (2007)

Adjusted Score: 63.435%
Critics Consensus: Gracie can be rousing and touching in spots, but is ultimately undone by its predictable story arc and a lack of nuance.
Synopsis: In 1978, a teenage girl fights to play on the boys' varsity soccer team after her brother, a soccer champion,... [More]
Directed By: Davis Guggenheim


Happy Gilmore (1996)

Adjusted Score: 62.669%
Critics Consensus: Those who enjoy Adam Sandler's schtick will find plenty to love in this gleefully juvenile take on professional golf; those who don't, however, will find it unfunny and forgettable.
Synopsis: Adam Sandler's second popular starring vehicle after Billy Madison is a goofy lowbrow paean to golf, hockey, and the comic... [More]
Directed By: Dennis Dugan

Adjusted Score: 63.385%
Critics Consensus: While sluggish in spots, Resurrecting the Champ is a sports/newsroom drama elevated by high-caliber performances by Samuel Jackson, Josh Hartnet, and Alan Alda.
Synopsis: Director and co-screenwriter (along with Chris Gerolmo, Allison Burnett, and Michael Bortman) Rod Lurie tells the uplifting tale of a... [More]
Directed By: Rod Lurie


The Express (2008)

Adjusted Score: 64.799%
Critics Consensus: The Express crosses the goal line as an inspirational sports drama, although fans of the genre will recognize many -- if not most -- of its clichés.
Synopsis: Finding Forrester star Rob Brown steps into the cleats of Heisman Trophy-winning gridiron giant Ernie Davis in director Gary Fleder's... [More]
Directed By: Gary Fleder


Wimbledon (2004)

Adjusted Score: 64.605%
Critics Consensus: A predictable, bland rom-com, but Bettany proves to be an appealing lead.
Synopsis: Peter Colt is an unlucky guy, scoring "love" both professionally and personally. Seeded near the bottom of the world tennis... [More]
Directed By: Richard Loncraine


Blue Crush (2002)

Adjusted Score: 64.666%
Critics Consensus: The surfing sequences are exhilarating, but the plot is pretty forgettable and trite.
Synopsis: Nothing gets between Anne Marie and her surfboard. Living in a beach shack with three roommates including her rebellious younger... [More]
Directed By: John Stockwell

Adjusted Score: 66.153%
Critics Consensus: Despite all the underdog sports movie conventions, the likable cast and lush production values make The Greatest Game Ever Played a solid and uplifting tale.
Synopsis: The true story of an upset victory that helped change the sport of golf forever provides the basis for this... [More]
Directed By: Bill Paxton


Race (2016)

Adjusted Score: 66.3%
Critics Consensus: Race is nowhere near as thrillingly fleet or agile as its subject, but the story -- and a winning central performance from Stephan James -- are enough to carry it over the finish line.
Synopsis: Race is based on the incredible true story of Jesse Owens, the legendary athletic superstar whose quest to become the... [More]
Directed By: Stephen Hopkins


Secretariat (2010)

Adjusted Score: 66.83%
Critics Consensus: Rousing, heartwarming, and squarely traditional, Secretariat offers exactly what you'd expect from an inspirational Disney drama -- no more, and no less.
Synopsis: Based on the Novel "Secretariat: The Making of a Champion" By William Nack, Secretariat chronicles the spectacular journey of the... [More]
Directed By: Randall Wallace


Bring It On (2000)

Adjusted Score: 66.863%
Critics Consensus: Despite the formulaic, fluffy storyline, this movie is surprisingly fun to watch, mostly due to its high energy and how it humorously spoofs cheerleading instead of taking itself too seriously.
Synopsis: The hard work, dedication, and personal politics behind "rah rah rah!" and "sis boom bah!" go under the microscope in... [More]
Directed By: Peyton Reed


Concussion (2015)

Adjusted Score: 66.04%
Critics Consensus: Concussion lands a solid, well-acted hit on its impressively timely subject matter, even if its traditional sports drama structure is a little too safe to deserve a full-on dance in the end zone.
Synopsis: Based on the true story of the doctor who discovered CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy) in football players, and the uphill... [More]
Directed By: Peter Landesman

Adjusted Score: 67.377%
Critics Consensus: Though formulaic, this horse story's saving grace is its strong performances.
Synopsis: Ben Crane was once a great horseman, whose gifts as a trainer were now being wasted on making other men's... [More]
Directed By: John Gatins


Cobb (1994)

Adjusted Score: 67.754%
Critics Consensus: Tommy Lee Jones's searing performance helps to elevate Cobb above your typical sports biopic; he's so effective, in fact, that some may find the film unpleasant.
Synopsis: What does a biographer do when the truth about his subject is far less pleasant than the legend? That is... [More]
Directed By: Ron Shelton


Rocky III (1982)

Adjusted Score: 67.792%
Critics Consensus: It's noticeably subject to the law of diminishing returns, but Rocky III still has enough brawny spectacle to stand in the ring with the franchise's better entries.
Synopsis: Sylvester Stallone returns to the character which made him famous in this wildly successful sequel. Rocky III starts with the... [More]
Directed By: Sylvester Stallone


Coach Carter (2005)

Adjusted Score: 68.575%
Critics Consensus: Even though it's based on a true story, Coach Carter is pretty formulaic stuff, but it's effective and energetic, thanks to a strong central performance from Samuel L. Jackson.
Synopsis: The true-life story of a coach who tries to teach his players that there's more to life than basketball is... [More]
Directed By: Thomas Carter

Adjusted Score: 70.123%
Critics Consensus: Pleasant to a fault, Million Dollar Arm is a middle-of-the-plate pitch that coasts on Jon Hamm's considerable charm without adding any truly original curves to Disney's inspirational sports formula.
Synopsis: Based on a true story, Disney's "Million Dollar Arm" follows JB Bernstein, a once-successful sports agent who now finds himself... [More]
Directed By: Craig Gillespie


The Karate Kid (2010)

Adjusted Score: 70.755%
Critics Consensus: It may not be as powerful as the 1984 edition, but the 2010 Karate Kid delivers a surprisingly satisfying update on the original.
Synopsis: When a 12-year-old from Detroit moves to China with his mother and incurs the wrath of the class bully at... [More]
Directed By: Harald Zwart


Rollerball (1975)

Adjusted Score: 70.913%
Critics Consensus: In Rollerball, social commentary collides with high-speed action -- and the audience is the winner.
Synopsis: In a future world ruled by industrialists, "civilized" society has removed violent activity and a new sport, rollerball, has emerged.... [More]
Directed By: Norman Jewison


Fever Pitch (2005)

Adjusted Score: 71.184%
Critics Consensus: While not a home run, Fever Pitch has enough charm and on-screen chemistry between the two leads to make it a solid hit.
Synopsis: Nick Hornby's acclaimed memoir about one man's struggle to balance his love of a woman and his love for soccer... [More]


Tin Cup (1996)

Adjusted Score: 71.392%
Critics Consensus: Breezy and predictable, Tin Cup is a likeable sports comedy that benefits greatly from Kevin Costner's amiable lead performance.
Synopsis: Roy McAvoy (Kevin Costner) is a talented golf pro, who owns his own driving range. That sounds impressive, but the... [More]
Directed By: Ron Shelton


Ali (2001)

Adjusted Score: 71.796%
Critics Consensus: Though perhaps no film could fully do justice to the fascinating life and personality of Muhammad Ali, Mann's direction and Smith's performance combine to pack a solid punch.
Synopsis: The life story of heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali, following the champ's early days as Cassius Clay and his rise... [More]
Directed By: Michael Mann


More Than a Game (2009)

Adjusted Score: 71.797%
Critics Consensus: Though the film may not delve as deep as some would prefer, More Than a Game is an inspiring documentary featuring likable youngsters, a positive message, and some exciting in-game footage.
Synopsis: Five talented young basketball players from Akron, Ohio star in this remarkable true-life coming of age story about friendship and... [More]
Directed By: Kristopher Belman


The Blind Side (2009)

Adjusted Score: 71.946%
Critics Consensus: It might strike some viewers as a little too pat, but The Blind Side has the benefit of strong source material and a strong performance from Sandra Bullock.
Synopsis: Taken in by a well-to-do family and offered a second chance at life, a homeless teen grows to become the... [More]
Directed By: John Lee Hancock


Personal Best (1982)

Adjusted Score: 74.235%
Critics Consensus: Mariel Hemingway has a career-making star turn in this highly physical drama about two Olympic athletes who find each other during competitive training.
Synopsis: In 1982, there was a brief cycle of homosexual-relationship films, none of which were successful enough to form the basis... [More]
Directed By: Robert Towne

Adjusted Score: 74.144%
Critics Consensus: Proudly profane and splendidly silly, Dodgeball is a worthy spiritual successor to the goofball comedies of the 1980s.
Synopsis: Directed by Rawson Marshall Thurber, Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story revolves around amiable underachiever Peter LaFleur (Vince Vaughn), whose rundown... [More]

Adjusted Score: 74.544%
Critics Consensus: Taking full advantage of the large IMAX screen, Ultimate X is a thrill ride for extreme sports junkies and novices alike.
Synopsis: In August, 2001, the Summer X Games came to the city of Brotherly Love, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and some of the... [More]
Directed By: Bruce Hendricks

Adjusted Score: 74.708%
Critics Consensus: Beastie Boy Adam Yauch proves his worth as a director with Gunnin' for That #1 Spot, a fun-filled chronicle of the top high school hoopsters of 2006.
Synopsis: On the corner of 155th and Frederick Douglas Boulevard in Harlem lies Rucker Park. By appearances, the concrete pavement, anchored... [More]
Directed By: Adam Yauch


Blades of Glory (2007)

Adjusted Score: 75.723%
Critics Consensus: Thanks to the spirited performances of a talented cast - particularly Will Ferrell and Jon Heder as rivals-turned-teammates -- Blades of Glory successfully spoofs inspirational sports dramas with inspired abandon.
Synopsis: Will Ferrell, Jon Heder, and Will Arnett headline this high-concept comedy concerning two male figure-skating rivals aching to compete despite... [More]
Directed By: Will Speck, Josh Gordon


Rocky II (1979)

Adjusted Score: 75.901%
Critics Consensus: Rocky II is a movie that dares you to root again for the ultimate underdog -- and succeeds due to an infectiously powerful climax.
Synopsis: After scoring a personal victory (though a physical defeat) in his "Cinderella" bout with Apollo Creed, Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone)... [More]
Directed By: Sylvester Stallone


Invincible (2006)

Adjusted Score: 76.033%
Critics Consensus: As simple and authentic as the gritty South Philly invirons in which it's set in, Invincible sends a uplifting and heartfelt message packed with an athletic enthusiasm that shouldn't be missed.
Synopsis: This is the true story of Vince Papale, who became a member of the Philadelphia Eagles football team as a... [More]
Directed By: Ericson Core

Adjusted Score: 76.949%
Critics Consensus: Though it occasionally stalls, Talladega Nights' mix of satire, clever gags, and excellent ensemble performances put it squarely in the winner's circle.
Synopsis: When America's number one NASCAR speed-demon is issued a direct challenge from a gay, French Formula One racer with a... [More]
Directed By: Adam McKay

Adjusted Score: 77.487%
Critics Consensus: An inspirational crowd-pleaser with a healthy dose of social commentary, Remember the Titans may be predictable, but it's also well-crafted and features terrific performances.
Synopsis: Based on actual events that took place in 1971, a white southern high school is integrated with black students from... [More]
Directed By: Boaz Yakin


Caddyshack (1980)

Adjusted Score: 79.025%
Critics Consensus: Though unabashedly crude and juvenile, Caddyshack nevertheless scores with its classic slapstick, unforgettable characters, and endlessly quotable dialogue.
Synopsis: An elite country club has to deal with a brash new member and a gopher intent on destroying their beloved... [More]
Directed By: Harold Ramis


Cool Runnings (1993)

Adjusted Score: 78.219%
Critics Consensus: Cool Runnings rises above its formulaic sports-movie themes with charming performances, light humor, and uplifting tone.
Synopsis: Cool Runnings fictionalizes the true story of a bobsledding team from Jamaica making it to the Olympics. The tale begins... [More]
Directed By: Jon Turteltaub

Adjusted Score: 79.547%
Critics Consensus: The harder they come, the harder they fall -- this film shows, in raw, gripping detail, that even skater dudes can't resist the life of the rich and famous. It's more poignant than hard-core, and gives us a portrait of a life run over by the whims of the entertainment industry.
Synopsis: The aggressive style of Mark "Gator" Rogowski (a.k.a. Gator Mark Anthony)--his unpredictable lines, and outrageous personal antics--made him a favorite... [More]
Directed By: Helen Stickler

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