Boxing, Ring
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There are many sports movies, some based on true stories, and others are inspirational fiction. Some can be outright hysterical, while others will make you need a box of tissues. The main point is, everyone loves a good sports movie, and we have provided you with the twenty best sports movies to put on your watchlist.  

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20. The Fighter, Netflix and Paramount+ (2010)

Best Sports Movies
Credit: IMDB

The Fighter is about Micky Ward, where boxing is a family affair. His mother is his manager, and his brother is his unreliable trainer. Even with Micky’s hard work, he is losing, and when the last fight nearly kills him, he listens to his girlfriend and splits from the family and their unhealthy ways. He then becomes a contender for the world title and earns a shot at redemption. 

19. Caddyshack, Roku and Prime Video (1980)

In Caddyshack, Danny Noonan works as a caddy at the Bushwood country club in order to pay for his college education. When he hears about a scholarship reserved for caddies, Noonan volunteers to caddy for an influential club member, and starts to struggle with the pressure of being the best. This is a hilarious movie perfect for all ages.

18. Gridiron Gang, Netflix and Sling TV (2006)

Sports Movies
Credit: IMDB

Gridiron Gang is about a counselor who works at a juvenile detention facility and turns the young inmates into a football team to help give them a sense of self-respect and social responsibility. He faces problems from high school coaches who do not want their players going against criminals on the field. This happens to be based on a true story. 

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17. Gran Turismo, Apple TV and Prime Video (2023)

Gran Turismo is based on the true story of Jann Mardenborough, a passionate gamer who was offered a opportunity of a lifetime when Nissan asked him to join their professional racing team. In the movie you get to watch as a group of underdogs — a gamer, a former race-car driver, and a motorsport executive — try to take on the most elite sport in the world.

16. Ali, Prime Video and STARZ (2001)

Muhammad Ali, an athletic genius with rebellious rage and inner grace, changed the American landscape forever. Fighting everybody and anybody, Ali took on the law, conventions, and the status quo. Ali mirrored the conflicts of his time and became one of the most admired fighters in the world. 

15. The Hill, Apple TV and Prime Video (2023)

The Hill is based on a true story about Rickey Hill, the son of a traveling pastor who must overcome physical obstacles in order to make his dream come true of playing major league baseball. You might need a box of tissues next to you while watching this tearjerker.

14. Rudy, Hulu and Apple TV (1993)

Rudy Ruettiger wants to play football at the University of Notre Dame but doesn’t have the tuition money or the grades to qualify him for a scholarship. Rudy lost his best friend at the steel mill where his father works, making his dream seem even bleaker to achieve. As he overcomes his dyslexia with the help of a tutor and a friend, he begins to fight his way to get into the school of his dreams. 

13. Happy Gilmore, Peacock and Prime Video (1996)

In Happy Gilmore, all Happy Gilmore (Adam Sandler) wanted was to become a pro hockey player, but when he discovers his prowess for driving a golf ball he decides to try that instead. But when his grandmother learns she will lose her home soon if she doesn’t pay a large amount to the bank, Happy takes it upon himself to win money through golfing to save her house.

12. Hustle, Netflix (2022)

Hustle Movie
Credit: IMDB

Hustle is about a basketball scout (Adam Sandler) looking to prove he has what it takes to thrive in the NBA. He finds a talented player in Spain and takes it upon himself to make him a star in the league. 

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11. A League of Their Own, Roku and Apple TV (1992)

When America’s athletic young men sign up to join World War II, a professional all-female baseball league appears in the Midwest, formed by candy maker Walter Harvey. The girls continue to make headlines alongside their scout Ernie Capadino and has-been coach Jimmy Dugan, and the line “there’s no crying in baseball” makes its way into pop culture from A League of Their Own.

10. 42, HBO Max and Hulu (2013)

Best Sports Movies
Credit: IMDB

42 is based on a true story. The film is centered in 1946 when a legendary manager of the Brooklyn Dodgers disobeys major league baseball’s notorious color barrier by signing Jackie Robinson to the team. The heroic act puts them both in the firing line with the public, the press, and other players. Facing racism from all sides, Robinson shows courage and admirable restraint by not reacting back. He lets his undeniable talent silence critics for him. 

9. Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, Hulu and Prime Video (2006)

NASCAR superstar Ricky Bobby (Will Ferrell) has everything — adored by fans, a trophy wife, wealth, and no end in sight to his incredible career. When French Formula One champion Jean Girard comes onto the racing scene though, Ricky loses it all and falls into despair. Only with the help from his ruthless father will Ricky pull himself out of his despair and return to his superstar status in Talladega Nights.

8. Hoop Dreams, Peacock and Pluto TV (1994)

Best Sports Movies
Credit: Amazon

Hoop Dreams is about two teenagers after school; William and Arthur travel 90 minutes each way from Chicago to St. Joseph High School in Westchester, Illinois, primarily a white suburban school that is well known for its basketball program. William and Arthur dream of being NBA stars, and with the support of their tight-knit families, they face the social and physical obstacles that will stand in their way. This true-story documentary was shot over the course of five years. 

7. Warrior, Prime Video and Pluto TV (2011)

Warrior focuses on an estranged family that gets pulled back together in the MMA ring. Tommy, and ex-Marine returns him and trains with his father for “Sparta,” the biggest MMA tournament ever held. Tommy’s brother Brendan also manages to fight his way into the tournament, and the two brothers must come to terms with the forces that pulled them apart.

6. The Karate Kid, Netflix and Hulu (1984)

The Karate Kid
Credit: IMDB

The Karate Kid is about Daniel, who moves to Southern California with his mother. He quickly finds himself the target of bullies who study karate at Cobra Kai dojo. Daniel befriends Mr. Miyagi, an unassuming repairman who is a martial art master. Miyagi takes Daniel under his wing and offers to train him in a more human form of karate to prepare him to compete against the Cobra Kai bullies. 

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5. The Sandlot, STARZ and Prime Video (1993)

Scottie Smalls is a young kid that just moved to a new neighborhood, and is struggling to make friends until he meets a group of kids that play baseball at the local sandlot. They band together on a bunch of funny adventures until Smalls borrows a priceless ball from his stepdad and it gets hit over a fence. The Sandlot is a classic not only for young kids but adults as well.

4. Rocky, MGM+ and Sling TV (1976)

Credit: IMDB

Rocky Balboa is a small-time boxer from working-class Philadelphia who is chosen to take on the reigning world heavyweight champion after the undefeated champion was injured by training with a feisty former bantamweight contender. Mickey becomes Rocky’s new opponent. 

3. The Blind Side, Prime Video and Apple TV (2009)

The Blind Side is a true story about Michael Oher, a homeless teen who has drifted in and out of the school system for years. Leigh Anne and her husband Sean take him in and eventually become his guardians, changing their lives. Michael’s tremendous size and protective instincts make him a great player for the football team. With help from his new family and a devoted tutor, he realizes his potential as a student and football player. 

2. Raging Bull, HBO Max and Hulu (1980) Best Sports Movies

Raging Bull
Credit: IMDB

Raging Bull is a story of a middleweight boxer who rises through the ranks to earn his first shot at the middleweight crown. He falls in love with a girl from the Bronx, and his inability to express his feelings enters the ring, where it takes over his life. It starts sending him into a downward spiral that could cost him everything. 

1. Remember The Titans, Disney Plus and Prime Video (2000)

Remember the Titans is a true story about a Virginia high school football where it is a way of life, and each game is celebrated more extravagantly than Christmas. In 1971 high school football was everything to the people who lived in Alexandria. When the local school board is forced to integrate an all-black school with an all-white school, the foundation of football’s great tradition is tested. 

What is the highest-grossing sports in movie history?

Cars takes the number one spot with $461 million pulled in, with The Blind Side coming in second with $309 million, and in third place is Rocky IV with $300 million.

What sports has the most movies?

Boxing is a leader in sports movies, with numerous true-story and fictional-story films hitting the theaters over the decades.

Which actor has been in the most sports movies?

Kevin Costner has been in several movies across the sports world — football, bicycle racing, golf, boxing, and racing — but his most frequent sport was baseball. He has been in several baseball-themed films over his long career.

Sports movies, whether they are based on a true story or not, shows the potential of the human body and soul while playing a sport. Some movies may be sillier than others, but they all hold that main character who wants to be great at what they do no matter what.