FishDuck Guide to Film Excellence

Kim Hastings FishWrap, FishWrap Archive 2 Comments

It looks like the weather is going to be nice this weekend…if you don’t count Sunday as part of the weekend.  The spring brings so many different weather patterns to the Pacific Northwest that it’s always a good idea to have a backup plan.

A movie sounds good.  And something tells me that you would like to see something with a sports and leisure theme.  You’ve seen Field of Dreams so many times that you’re starting to pronounce The Great American Pastime with a distinctively James Earl Jones accent (“Beesbul”), and you’ve already planned your summer vacation to Dyersville, Ohio.  Now you want to see something you haven’t seen before.

We at have just what you need; seven movies with a sports and leisure theme, and a distinct Oregon connection.  That way, on the off-chance that you don’t like the movie, you can at least look for local sights.

Drive, He Said: Filmed On Campus, Including Extensive footage in and around Mac Court.  Sports and Leisure Theme: Basketball

Jack Nicholson’s debut as a director, this stars William Tepper as Hector, a star athlete who gets lucky overandoverandoverandover…

5 Milk Duds out of 10.

The Great Race,  filmed in part in Gearhart. Sports and leisure theme: Auto Racing

Tony Curtis, Natalie Wood (at her most fetching) and Jack Lemmon set out to race cars from New York to…Paris?

6 Milk Duds

The Legend of Tillamook’s Gold, filmed in Tillamook, Manzanita, and Vernonia.  Sports and Leisure theme: Treasure Hunting.

Suzanne Marie Doyen plays Julie Kimbell, who encounters a wise Native, and a helpful Roosevelt Elk (and really, aren’t they all just awfully helpful) and obstacles real and imagined as she does what so many young teens do, hunt for buried treasure in the Tillamook Burn.

5.75 Milk Duds

Bongwater, filmed in Portland.  Sports and leisure theme:  Getting High

Luke Wilson plays David, who falls for Serena, who falls for her weed 538 times a day.  Andy Dick co-stars, so it has that going for it too.

2 Milk Duds

Point Break, Filmed at Ecola State Park in Seaside.  Sports and Leisure Theme: Surfing

Keanu Reaves hangs at least 10 (maybe as many as 16) to catch surfing bank robbers.

6.5 Milk Duds

Personal Best, Filmed at Hayward Field and various sites in Eugene.  Sports and Leisure Theme:  Track

Mariel Hemingway plays Chris Cahill, star track athlete and candidate for the Olympic Team.  Her life and passion, on and off the track, makes this one of the best on the list.

7 Milk Duds

Kansas City Bomber, Filmed in Portland.  Sports and Leisure Theme: Roller Derby.

Raquel Welch skates.  ‘Nuff said.

6.25 Milk Duds

Without Limits,  filmed in Coos Bay, Cottage Grove, Heceta Head, and Springfield.  Sports and leisure theme: Track, Olympic Games.

Billy Crudup plays Steve Prefontaine, the legendary miler who competed in the 1972 Olympics and was favored in 1976 before dying in a car accident in May of 1975.  The film does a good job capturing the passion that “Pre” brought to the track, as well as to life off the track.

8 Milk Duds.



The blue skies and warm days are right around the corner…or maybe the corner after that.  Until then, dim the lights.  “Sssshhh, the movie’s starting.”

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