April is National Youth Sports Safety Month, a celebration and call to the youth of the nation to remain physically fit and healthy. The goal of the holiday is to keep safety in mind when competing in sports and protecting the children from serious injuries that could haunt them for the rest of their lives. In honor of a holiday celebrating kids remaining physically fit and active, here are some of the best kid’s sports movies of all time.
If you ask just about anyone who was a kid in the ’90s, “The Sandlot” might be their favorite sports movie, kids in the lead or not. The movie is a baseball movie that takes place in 1962, told in a flashback format similar to “Stand By Me,” where the now grown man is remembering the best times of his childhood. The main character is a boy named Smalls who moves to a new neighborhood and makes friends with a group of boys who play baseball in the “sandlot.” The highlight of the movie comes when Smalls brings his father’s Babe Ruth autographed ball to the Sandlot and it is hit into a yard with a giant dog named “The Beast.”
“The Mighty Ducks”
“The Mighty Ducks” has a distinction that no other kid’s sports movie will probably ever have. In 1993, Walt Disney purchased their own professional hockey team and named them after this 1992 Disney-made kid’s flick. The movie stars Emilio Estevez as an attorney arrested for drunk driving and sentenced to community service where he has to coach a pee wee hockey team. He then takes the overmatched kids and helps turn them into winners, all while learning a valuable lesson in the end. It is pure Disney to the bone.
“Bad News Bears”
Just like “The Mighty Ducks,” the 1976 baseball movie “The Bad News Bears” also features a man asked to coach a little league team coached by someone with alcohol problems. In this case it is Walter Matheau who plays the coach of the Bears, a team created due to a lawsuit that prohibited unskilled kids from playing. As a result, his team has the worst players in the city and they lose by 26 runs in the first game. After he recruits two ringers to help the team win, he slowly realizes that winning might not be the most important part of youth sports.
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