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Thursday, October 06, 2016

Review: Of Miracles and Men

I recently joined Netflix and was looking for things to add to my watch list. I wanted to add the movie Miracle, but (of course) it wasn't available to stream. Almost none of the movies I wanted to add on my watch list were available, which is another story. What I found instead, though, was a documentary about the 1980 Miracle on Ice titled, Of Miracles and Men.

When I started streaming it, I assumed it would focus on the US team like a few other documentaries I've seen have done. I was wrong. The documentary told about the Miracle on Ice from the point of view of the Soviet players who were on the ice that day.

It started out showing some history of Soviet hockey, which was actually interesting. Not as interesting as the main story, but still better than I expected.

The middle section was about that 1980 Olympic game and this part was riveting because it's the first time I've seen anything that talked about the Soviet side of the equation. Who these men were and what happened to them afterward. And one of the players we meet in our travel back to 1980 is Slava Fetisov who spoke excellent English and didn't require subtitles like the other former players did.

One thing to keep in mind is that while I was a huge hockey fan most of my life, I had a falling out with the sport because of my local NHL team and hadn't been following any NHL stuff by 1989 so I didn't know the names of any of the Soviet players that came over to play in the National Hockey League, not even the name of the first man who was ever released from the Red Army so that he could come over to play for the NHL. That man? Slava Fetisov.

His story is the focus of part three of the documentary. It did talk about the ramifications the loss caused inside the Soviet team, but it also was the story of how Fetisov was finally allowed to join the NHL. It wasn't quick or easy and it might have been a more interesting story than the Olympic miracle itself.

The documentary is nearly 2 hours long (1 hour and 42 minutes IIRC), but the time flew by and I enjoyed this story a lot. Definitely an interesting way to spend a couple of hours. Highly recommended to anyone who has an interest in the 1980 Miracle on Ice.

Two thumbs up. :-)