Paul Newman and his Butch Cassidy director, George Roy Hill, made a very original comedy in this 1977 story of an over-the-hill player/coach (Newman) for a lousy hockey team who gets results when he teaches his players to ... more »get dirty. One of the most hilariously profane movies ever to come out of Hollywood, this is the kind of film that makes its own rules as it goes along. Newman is very good, and while Hill goes for the gusto in terms of capturing the violence of this world, his instinct for comedy has never been sharper. Great support from Strother Martin, Paul Dooley, and the rest. --Tom Keogh« less
Mary-Frances K. from HIBBING, MN Reviewed on 9/13/2011...
I have a copy of this movie but every time it is on TV I watch it. Still cannot get over the fact that Paul Newman was in a hockey movie! Great movie showing what it is like playing hockey & being on the road. Great supporting cast with Michael Ontkean & the "Hanson Brothers". I quote this movie all the time.
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Kathy J. from GLENDORA, CA Reviewed on 5/26/2010...
When it seems that all hope is lost, don't foget that you can play 'dirty pool'.
Paul Newman's character is quite ingenious at this.
Fantastic, Funny, a CLASSIC for ANY Hockey Fan
Philip Lochner | San Jose, CA | 05/15/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Slap Shot is a great hockey comedy. It's a hilarious, vulgar, completely wild joyride through the trials of a failing 70's steelmill-town based, utterly amateur hockey team. Failing, that is, until their players resort to pure violence in an attempt to keep their franchise alive.Paul Newman plays the womanizing player/coach who, after a series of embarassing losses (including one to a visitng team's center who's flat drunk) needs to work with a 3 brother gang of misfits, who all look alike and have an incredibly aggressive style of playing.Chaos insues when Newman's character decides to finally play these "goons" with his other teammates, and he watches as the fan base increases when they proceed to physically demolish - without any love for the game - the opposing teammates in an series of hysterical scenes that combine the best in hockey photography with hilariously explicit dialouge and violence. The shot of the goon's nonchalanty skating past the visitor's box and smacking each of them in the head with their sticks is classic.This action scenes in this movie is everything you wished your NFL highlight tapes to be. The DVD itself is excellent quality, including the true film soundtrack (copyright limitation prevented some of the songs from appearing on the VHS and cable versions).Extra bonus features are pretty nonexistent - just some scene selections and generic Actor Profiles that were prelevant in the first generation of DVDs created a couple years ago - but the quality and entertainment value of the movie more than makes up for these shortcomings."
Maybe the greatest sports movie ever
Richard Goddard | Hillsborough, NJ | 02/21/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Ask hardcore hockey fans (the kind that are familiar with the Montreal Maroons or that understand that present-day hockey is virtually figure-skating compared to the seventies) what their favorite sports movie is, or ask hockey pros what their favorite sports movie is; probably more than half the time, you'll hear "Slap Shot". Some "serious" sports films suffer from self-importance or a lack of realism; try watching a good war documentary for actual life-and-death situations. Thankfully, "Slap Shot" doesn't take itself terribly seriously yet still manages to paint an accurate, believable picture.
Sure, the humor is rude and crude, but necessary to paint a somewhat accurate picture of `70's minor league hockey (surely these guys weren't discussing Plato or speaking in blue-blood accents). It may be offensive to uninitiated people (e.g. people who don't watch hockey or team sports in general), but the humor is oft-hilarious for hockey fans.
Paul Newman plays crafty, alternately obnoxious and charming player-coach Reg Dunlop, leader of the mediocre minor league Charlestown Chiefs (though in reality the movie was filmed in Johnstown, PA). Fearful that the team is going to fold (now that the big mill in town is closing), Reg concocts a scheme in which he'll find a way to make the team better and profitable in the hopes that the yet-unknown owner will opt to sell the team rather than disband it.
What eventually generates interest and success in the team is their change to a rough-and-tumble style of play, mercilessly beating on opponents (a la the typical style of play for many `70's teams), largely thanks to the infusion of the three Hanson brothers (who in real life actually were minor-league bruisers), who also provide much of the humor in the film. Michael Ontkean plays Ned Braden, the Ivy Leaguer who is a skilled scorer and naturally is unhappy with the fight-first direction of the team. His dysfunctional relationship with his young alcoholic wife serves as a subplot and also reminds Reg of his own unhappy marriage, largely due to his hockey life.
The film is full of fantastically funny moments: Reg's disbelief upon seeing the Hanson's for the first time ("They brought their f**kin' toys with `em!"), the players being forced to do a fashion show that goes awry when one of the players strips, the great Strother Martin as the cheapskate conniving general manager, the French-Canadian goaltender having hallucinations after being pummeled with shots, the Hansons starting a fight before the national anthem even starts, etc.
This is definitely one of the best sports films ever made (both in terms of comedy, and strangely, realism); don't expect anything highbrow, though, "THIS IS HOCKEY!" as the Chiefs rug-adorned announcer yells as the Chiefs are mercilessly pummeling their opponents. "
At last, the original version is saved
Randy Honeycutt | Whittier, California | 07/25/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have just received (and watched) the DVD version of "Slap Shot", and I thank the powers that be for restoring the original sound track to the movie. The generic music that was released on VHS took the heart out of the movie. With the restoration, and the excellent digital quality of the movie, my favorite film is complete. Now, a full 5 stars only because I can't give it 10."
The Ultimate Hockey Movie!
Randy Honeycutt | 01/22/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Paul Newman is brilliant in what has to be the greatest hockey movie ever made. Newman plays Reggie Dunlop an over-the-hill player/coach of a last place hockey club, which is about to go bankrupt as the steel town of Charlestown is about to close its primary source of income, the steel mill. With nothing left to lose Coach Dunlop begins to "use his imagination and roll with it" by getting his players to play "Old-Time Hockey" in hopes of getting intrest in selling the team to a group of Florida Businessmen. Laughs abound from an excellent supporting class that includes Strother Martin, Michael Ontkean, Jennifer Warren, Lindsay Crouse and Jerry Houser. I found the DVD quality to be excellent. The greatest addition on the DVD over the video is the restored original soundtrack, with 70's classics from Leo Sayer, Elton John and Maxine Nightengale. If you love hockey, comedy and Paul Newman, this is a must have!"
Newmans Best on DVD!!!!
Randy Honeycutt | 03/09/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"For years after going to Hockey games one of my Favorite things was going home and watching SLAP SHOT on VHS.. yes the quality was Awful... But why lie this film is such a Riot I LOVED IT!!! So when I bought it for my DVD player It was the first pre-1980 movie I bought and I have to say I watched it (after I went to a Kings game none the less) in a whole new light.... The Hockey sequences (especially in the Beginning) Sounded Incredible...I noticed little things that I have never seen before (look at the Hansons Jackets for example).. I was BLOWN AWAY!!!Also It is the original score of the film.... But I never know there were FLEETWOOD MAC songs in this Movie... (My VHS version has some crappy filler songs) Overall it was a great viewing experience and a MUST for all Hockey fans"