Parents' Guide to

The Miracle Match

By Heather Boerner, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 11+

Great game, bad storytelling. Soccer buffs only.

Movie PG 2005 101 minutes
The Miracle Match Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 1 parent review

age 12+

Good movie, Common Sense Media didn't quite cover this movie completely

I just watched this movie and it was great! It was very patriotic, and the US team focused on being a team rather than individual players. Overall it was very good movie. However, common sense media didn't clarify what language was used in the movie. Yes, there are derogatory racial slurs, but there are also common curse words too. H**l was used very often as well as d**n. One of the players at one point says the h word and the others joke about how he'll soon be using d**n. also, at one point, a** was used as well. Besides the language, this was a very appropriate movie for teenagers.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

Unfortunately, like so much in this patina-covered film, The Miracle Match lays on the patriotism thick and heavy, smothering it. The whole thing is designed to make you cry with sentiment. Instead, it becomes schlocky fast. There's the patriotism. There's the ad-naseum speeches about the virtues of the game. ("It's the most democratic of games," intones Patrick Stewart as Dent McSkimming. "It's the people's game. It's your people's game.") There are the repeated lectures to believe in themselves. While the movie beats you over the head with these ideologies, it simultaneously sucks the life out of the film and makes it just about the game instead of about the guys who played it.

It doesn't help that the script makes no pretense of tension about whether the guys will make the World Cup team. There are cursory conflicts -- Frank is set to be married the week of the tournament, and another player is scared of flying -- but those are resolved quickly, and so most of the film feels like the pre-game show until the big match. Without that tension, there's no point in watching to the end -- which is a shame, because that's where The Miracle Match gets it really right. The final game is a doozy -- well-paced and fabulously filmed, with a surprise cameo by Bush frontman Gavin Rossdale. And when at the end the real-life players appear, a la A League of Their Own, darn if viewers won't find themselves shedding a tear or two. But the poor writing and character development make this a film only for die-hard soccer fans who want to know about the history of the game in the U.S.

Movie Details

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