United Passions is the equivalent of a new movie about the World Trade Center omitting 9/11. There is so much scandal with FIFA (Fédération Internationale de Football Association) and this movie makes the executives look like the good guys, which they are not if you follow any news on the subject. 90% funded by FIFA, this soupy dreck is the Nintendo Power of circle jerk movies based on real life. This crap is what Antwone Fisher would be if Antwone Fisher was a liar, which he isn’t.That being said, the movie itself wasn’t all that bad. It wasn’t good either and that’s the main problem. If it was worse it could be great and that saddens me. The acting was actually pretty good. Tim Roth was as good as ever and his scenes with Sam Neill were really well done. If anything could have saved the movie it would have been them but unfortunately Gérard Depardieu was the star of the first half of the movie. He’s a really good actor, don’t get me wrong, but he is just so bad in this it’s depressing. I don’t know if he was just getting a paycheck or had something happen in his personal life while this was filming but he was phoning it in and it was apparent. I call it soccer because I’m American but it should be called football everywhere. ‘American Football’ should be called Rugby for Pansies. American Football has more pads than a Depends factory (that joke made me cringe a little). It’s closer to bowling than anyone cares to admit. They do activity for 10 seconds every 3 minutes, sits and drinks a bunch, followed by a large cheering celebration and the average player weighs close to 300 lbs. American Football is LARPing for sports nerds. I would love to see the winners of the Superbowl go against the winners of the rugby world cup. It would be brutal and demoralizing for your standard bovine American and I would love every bloody second of it. There is a part in the movie they mentioned “The Death Match” between Ukrainian factory workers and German air defense artillery men in 1942. There are a bunch of different versions of this story and is ripe for a movie based on it. Why they didn’t decide to make one based on this story as opposed to whatever this was is beyond me.
That leads me into my remake. I would keep the title and make a movie based on “The Death Match”. From the perspective of a Ukrainian factory worker/member of the team. It would basically be The Longest Yard meets Miracle. There is something to be said about doing a movie in the correct language, but since I hate subtitles I would make the movie in English and put a disclaimer at the beginning. Or I would do that thing where they start in another language and then you zoom in on a character and change languages to let the audience know we didn’t forget how languages work.
I like bad movies but United Passions isn’t bad enough for me to like it. It has high production values, good acting, and an OK enough story. This isn’t Nic Cage bad but it is definitely one not to watch.
As always I am Tim McDonald, your movie watching stunt double. Hit me up on Twitter or Facebook to make suggestions or comments. I have a good sized list of movies to review but I am always open to recommendations or requests.