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Rated PG · 135 minutes · 2004
The title refers to the U.S. hockey team's surprising victory over the Soviet Union in the 1980 winter Olympics, though nothing about this 2004 Disney drama surprised me except its length—135 minutes—which somehow permits neither adequate characterization of the players nor incisive treatment of the game strategy. Kurt Russell gives a terse, unsentimental performance as coach Herb Brooks, but director Gavin O'Connor sticks to the Hoosiers playbook. Clumsy news montage tracks the moral burnout of the late 70s; it's just a setup for us to wrap ourselves in the flag later, though in a weird stroke of revisionism President Carter's much reviled "malaise" speech is presented as a moment of inspiration.



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