Her Best Move
, 20 Jan 2010
This was a blind selection and an unlikely choice for a family with teenage sons, a teen romance girls' soccer picture. The back story suggests the US answer to Bend It Like Beckham, but there the comparison ends. While the UK movie was a middleweight story of racial integration dressed up with football and humour, Her Best Move is bland niche market pap, though with plenty of redeeming features. Leah Pipes is convincing as the soccer star and her Dad the unshaven obsessive coach is excellent and very well cast. Her love interest is too drippy and the romance could have been exploited much more, though the film only occasionally descends into schmaltz, isn't totally predictable and is generally well made, though the title is limp.
Is there racial interest? Er, no. Black characters are strangely absent from the pitch and this is mostly WASP all the way. The crucial test of this type of film, however, is the sports action, and here it redeems itself realistically, though more wide shots could have varied the relentless Steadicam at the players' feet. And, yes, the girl really can play, she isn't drop-dead-gorgeous with faked action, but realistically strong and robust surrounded by real soccer playing extras.
Best unintentional humour: the same 'National Selectors' doing the same pointing and nodding on the far touchline at every match . Most cringeworthy moment: the phrase 'Make a goal' - aaagh! Try saying that to Cloughie.
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