North Dallas Forty
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Top Customer Reviews
This is a fantastic film. One thing that struck me is that for a football film, there is very little actual football in it. Which is the reason for the title of my review. This film is ABOUT football... not a football film. It's about the players in a time when the league was still young and, I dare say, corrupted by the use of pain killers and alochol. It was the hey dey of the Cowboys, the Raiders and the Steelers and football players were treated like Rock Stars.
It's the film "Any Given Sunday" wanted to be. But failed miserably at even being a cheap imitation.
If you loved 1970's films and 1970's football, this film is a must see.
"North Dallas Forty" is probably one of my favorite sports movies, and definitely my favorite football movie. That's because of its defiant outsider approach -- "Ball Four", the baseball book that made Peter Gent's football novel possible, only ever wound up a lame sitcom; "North Dallas Forty" goes all the way. Even though the movie is based on the Dallas Cowboys of the 1960s, the instantly dated 1970s' filmmaking technique remains timeless (even if it's from the same director who made "Weekend at Bernie's", which is timeless for very different reasons).
Part of the movie's continuing appeal remains its cast. Nick Nolte is a brilliant lead, as the rebellious but honest-to-a-fault North Dallas wide receiver Phil Elliott. Phil tells it like it is and sees management for what they are, but doesn't realize he's being cheated out of his career until the third or fourth time he's been double-crossed by owners, coaches and friends alike.
Playing a riff on Dandy Don Meredith, country singer/songwriter Mac Davis plays sly quarterback Seth Maxwell. The rest of the football team is filled out with several ex-NFL players. John Matuszak's second acting career was launched by this movie, and Bo Svenson's football career should have been launched by this movie. The coaches, Charles Durning (as a cliche-spouting offensive coordinator) and the great G.D.Read more ›
Not only is "North Dallas Forty" accurate, it is accurate in the extreme. It shows players taking shots in their joints in order to play in the game. It shows the way management treats players like meat, like yesterday's newspaper. It shows the way players eschew teamwork to look out for themselves, their statistics and their salaries. In a very Hollywood way, this movie uses big stars but makes a valid point about pro football in a way no film ever has.
I went to Pete Gent's school, Michigan State University, where I lived in an athletic or "jock" dorm. I knew football players at MSU including a couple that went on to become pros and all-pro in the NFL. I'll never forget the day I showed up for my test in freshman Natural Science when I had a little chat with the two football players in my class, one of whom went on to become an all-American and all-pro in the NFL and blocked for O.J. Simpson.
"We were at the professor's house last night going over the test," one of them told me moments before the test was passed out. That was one of my first real-life lessons in how college athletes are different from the rest of us. When the "North Dallas Forty" version of college football is made, maybe that scene will be included.
Until then, you have this film to help you understand how the NFL really works and what it's employees go through during their careers, which average 4.3 years.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
really the best portrait of pro football ever; also a very well-made and engaging film regardless of topic.Published 25 days ago by Amazon Customer
NORTH DALLAS FORTY (1979) is often compared to SEMI-TOUGH (1977) because they both take place in the late Seventies among similar Dallas-area pro football teams and rely on... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Allen Smalling
If your into the realitities of football this one will put you smack dabble in the middle of smack city! Read morePublished 4 months ago by J. Pepoon
North Dallas Forty is a lot like reading a really bad break up note. The guy who wrote the book played for the Cowboys but had ambitions as a great writer. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Adam Adiment
Ordered for a friend a old movie he loves. Was delivered promptly as a great as he rememberedPublished 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
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