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Sunday, December 17, 2006

Do You Believe In Miracles?

Yep, it's movie review day. Well, kind of. Do You Believe In Miracles is an hour long documentary on the 1980 Olympic hockey team. I was so captured by the movie Miracle, that I wanted to see more about that team.

This documentary aired on HBO in 2001 and includes interviews with Herb Brooks who coached the team, Craig Patrick who was another coach, about half a dozen US team members, a couple of soviet team members and sports reporters from both the US and USSR. Not only did this hour-long show cover the hockey team, but they also spent a great deal of time putting the gold medal into societal and historical perspective. This included interviews from Walter Mondale, who was vice president when these Olympics occurred, some regular news reporters and one of the former Iranian hostages.

I enjoyed the documentary a lot, particularly how they put it in context because that really was critical in explaining how huge this miracle was to the United States. It was also completely fabulous that they put the Soviet players' perspective into the show as well. That added a lot and it was the first time I'd seen anything about that at all.

What I thought needed improvement: they didn't display the names of the people interviewed often enough. I frequently couldn't remember which player was speaking and I just gave up after a while. The only one I recognized every time he appeared on screen was Jack O'Callahan. I also wish the documentary had been a little longer and showed more hockey. My other disappointment was at the end. They had graphics telling what the players/coaches interviewed were doing now, but only those interviewed. I would have liked to have seen what the entire US team was up to now like they did at the end of the movie I watched a couple of weeks ago.

Overall, it was an interesting documentary that enhanced Miracle. I wish I'd seen it before I watched the movie.

My rating: 4 stars