Saturday, September 16, 2006

The Rocket

The inner hockey muse suggested to me this afternoon over several pints at the local micro-brewery that a triple feature would be a most excellent way to wrap up our little puck film festival here. So, who am I to argue?

We'll start with honoring a recent film that looks at a controversial hockey hero and a personal favorite of mine. These are scenes from that movie... The Rocket: The Maurice Richard Story.

... the film recreates the brutal atmosphere of pre-helmet, tiny-equipment 1950s professional hockey, akin to what Martin Scorsese did with 1950s boxing in Raging Bull. You get the same isolated sounds and images of violence in the crushing body checks and on-ice fights as you do in the boxing scenes in Raging Bull.

Ultimately, however, The Rocket shares more in common with films such as Cinderella Man or Rocky in the sense the protagonist becomes a symbol for the working class
Full review >>> here.

Speaking of Maurice "the Rocket" Richard, here's a classic canadian hockey story that's been masterfully animated in which the Rocket plays a central role... The Sweater. has become one of the best known works of literature in Canada. It was made into a National Film Board of Canada (NFB) animated short in 1980, known as The Sweater, or Le Chandail. The short is often shown, in both French and English, to elementary school students, making it very well known amongst Canadian youth.

The story is widely considered an allegory for the linguistic and cultural tensions between anglophone and francophone Canadians, and an essential classic of Canadian literature. An excerpt from the story is now also commemorated in both official languages of Canada on the back of the Canadian five-dollar bill
We'll be back with the final presentation of the First Odd Man Rush Film Festival after a short intermission...

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