- Original title
- Running time
- 122 min.
- United States
Victor J. Kemper
Comedy | Sports. Ice Hockey
- Synopsis / Plot
- A rougher version of George Roy Hill's pet theme of men as overaged adolescents, SLAP SHOT stars Paul Newman as Reggie Dunlop, the venerable player-coach of the Charlestown Chiefs, a fifth-rate minor league hockey team. When their blue-collar town falls prey to Rust Belt ills of the 1970s, attendance drops, and the greedy owner starts looking for a buyer, anxious to cash out. Dunlop is informed that the players need to crank up the box office to keep their jobs in what will likely be their last season. To the coach's dismay, general manager Joe McGrath (Strother Martin) imports the Hanson brothers, a hockey Three Stooges who like to assault soda machines and play with toys. But once Dunlop turns them loose, they're a Panzer division on ice, and the team starts winning by adopting their bone-crushing style. Although the team is on the upswing, Dunlop's wife, Francine (Jennifer Warren), seems to be through with him, and the isolated wives of the other players aren't much happier with their fate. This sidesplitting, profanity saturated film is one of the funniest ever made about any sport. While writer Nancy Dowd intended to probe darker issues--such as the greed of ownership, the blood lust of fans, and the childishness of the players--Hill submerges them in raucous laughter. Newman is near his peak as the romantic, manipulative, womanizing, hard-drinking coach, and the high-sticking Hanson brothers achieve comic immortality in their only film appearance.
: Writers Guild of America (WGA): Nominated for Best Original Comedy Screenplay
: Cannes Film Festival: Official Selection (Out Of Competition)
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