Football movie classics
The Longest Yard (1974)
Lefty Hollywood filmmaker Robert Aldrich had a sly ability to subvert his he-man genre assignments, i.e., making Mickey Spillanes far-right detective hero, Mike Hammer, an unhinged psychopath in 1955s Kiss Me, Deadly. Ditto The Longest Yard, in which the multicultural prison football team at Citrus State Penitentiary, quarterbacked by a jailbird Burt Reynolds, are a rowdy, anti-authoritarian wild bunch, more likely to shout Free Attica! than Go Pats! Reynoldss Paul Wrecking Crewe was shaped to combine Joe Namaths duende with Bobby Laynes mighty throwing arm. And Eddie Alberts fascistic, pigskin-crazy warden? Aldrich later declared, Eddie Albert is Nixon! - Gerald Peary
Pictured: Burt Reynolds as Paul Crewe.