It is always a shame when unknown filmmakers take a page fromthe popular filmmaking techniques of the day. For this film, the model is part Run Lola Run, part Bend it Like Beckham. The similarities to Lola are plentiful, complete with the rapid still-frame snapshots that were that film’s trademark. The plot is Beckham-esque, featuring a small-town soccer team, a new star player, and love.
This film is the very definition of “low budget”. It seems to me that if you are going to have…a film about a soccer star, you should actually be able to afford to shoot some shots of a game or two. The sad thing is, there are games depicted in the film, but instead of going to all the hassle of gathering together multiple players and uniforms, the games consist of showing the same couple of abstract jumping scenes over and over again. Even the film’s start looks like a poor man’s Seal, complete with giant gap teeth and markings on his cheeks.
This film is, in a word, lame.
The audio track on this disc is of the generic stereo variety. I am always wary of films that don’t offer either a Dolby or a DTS track. This disc has done nothing but support my beliefs. This track is simply a muddled mess. The dialog seems easy enough to hear, but then it’s in German, so what do I know? There is no balanced separation to the audio. Viewers either hear all dialog, all ambient noise, all music, or a train wreck of all three. Again, the lack of a decent Dolby audio track is just one more example of the financial corners that were cut with this disc.
The video quality on this film matches that of a high quality home video camera. There is a definite problem with sharpness, as well as something of a problem with grain. In fact, the whole film lacks the clarity that many film fans have come to expect from their DVDs. Edges are soft, and the whole film just has a very unfinished look. This is not helped by the fact the the images are shot with lots of shaky handheld cameras and wild zooms. While I realize that this was an artistic choice, that doesn’t make it a good one.
Viewers may also want to know that though the back of the box says that the film is on 1.78:1, it is actually more like 1.85:1. This is not necessarily a big deal, but the film is not going to perfectly fit a widescreen television display.
There is only one special feature on this disc, and the producers have even managed to mess that up. The International Trailer is here, but I must wonder what makes it “international”. Maybe the producers think that German is the language most spoken around the world. They must, because this worthless trailer doesn’t have any subtitles.
I am a big soccer/football fan, and this film is an insult to the game, as well as to all fans of foreign film. There should be a certain minimum level of cinematic quality that must be met before a disc is allowed to be pressed. Of course, the obvious reply to that statement is to question who will be responsible for determining what that minimum level is. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Obviously somebody thought this film was a good idea, or it would never have been made. That somebody was most certainly wrong.
Special Features List
- International Trailer (in German with no subtitles)