By now you’ve seen the Crooked Arrows trailer. It’s got 100,000+ views on youtube, Paul Rabil and other stars have been tweeting all about it, and the trailer was featured on Friday night at the US Lacrosse Convention in Philly. But if you’re like me, the second you saw the trailer your mind instantly started screaming, “quack, quack, quack, Mr. Ducksworth!”.
Don’t believe me that Crooked Arrows is the lacrosse equivalent of the Mighty Ducks? Watch the trailers for both movies, and then I’ll break down the story lines. You’ll be convinced.
Ok, so the trailers are a little different at first glance, not only in tone, but in length as well, and yet somehow the two movies still look extremely similar to me. And I don’t know about you, but that gets me excited! You see, I played hockey growing up and I loved the Mighty Ducks when it first came out. Actually, I still love it today. It’s a PG, feel good movie that places value on hard work, fun, team spirit and even redemption. It’s a top notch flick. Plus it did a lot for the game of hockey in the US, and even spawned a new professional franchise name in Anaheim, CA.
And Crooked Arrows looks to be picking up on those themes as well to a certain extent. The trailer features moments of hard training, team bonding, funny moments, soul searching and again, redemption for both the coach and team. Now just about any sports movie made for all ages is going to have these aspects in it, so what really puts Crooked Arrows in the same vein as the Mighty Ducks? It’s the little things…
Gordon Bombay was an ex-hockey player who had become a big time lawyer who never lost. The Coach in C.A. is a casino owner who used to be a lacrosse player. He is also unaccustomed to losing in any form.
Bombay shows up to the first practice in a limo. “Mr. Joe Money” shows up to practice in a red Audi convertible. Bombay impresses the kids with his infamous triple deke. Joe Money impresses the kids by ripping all four corners. Bombay says it’s not about winning, because it is about fun. Joe Money says it’s about bringing back respect for the game. Bombay has an older spiritual advisor in Klaus, or Franz, or whatever that guy’s name was. Joe Money gets a grandma to look after him, and that’s just “how she rolls, baby”. If you can’t see the similarities here yet, just wait… because they get better.
Both teams start out as being absolutely awful it seems. The MD kids can barely skate, and really don’t seem to care that much about hockey. The Crooked Arrows kids don’t seem organized at all, and aren’t playing the game with any honor. The important thing here is that teams that were underperforming will perform mightily when it counts, because that’s how redemption works!
And of course on the road to redemption, one can never forget about style. The Mighty Ducks went from scrubs to heroes in their new uniforms and gear, and it seems like the Crooked Arrows do the same. By the end of the movie, these guys are swagged out in red and black. And this all makes sense… because it’s the movies, and appearance is a big part of the deal. But it also echoes hockey and lacrosse culture, where gear is a top concern for so many, so maybe it will increase giving to under-privileged programs. That would be a great unintended consequence!
Finally, while both movies seem to focus on the kids, and THEIR path to success, the movie is also clearly about grown men, and how important they are to the development of our youth. Both movies have characters who have strayed for one reason or another, and both show how coaching, and getting involved in the right way can make all the difference in a community.
There are clearly differences between the two movies. The Crooked Arrows guys are older, the sport is different, and the story has its own twists and turns, but the formula seems really close, and I’m pumped to see Crooked Arrows for that reason alone! I loved the Mighty Ducks, it did a lot to raise the profile of hockey in a positive way, and I have the same hopes for Crooked Arrows. I haven’t seen the full movie yet, but from what I have seen, it’s going to be an instant sports classic. Crooked Arrrows is doing a lacrosse movies right it seems…. AWESOME!
For more EXCELLENT photos of filming, check out Bryce Vickmark‘s work for Lacrosse Magazine. A great inside look at things!
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