What a fun movie! Will Ferrell is strong this time around in a film that focuses on three generations of boys: father, son and grandfather. Ferrell is caught in the middle. While Robert Duvall plays the domineering grandfather -- remember "The Great Santini?"
The picture is a little about soccer, a little about parenting, and a lot about laughing. Mike Ditka shows up and delivers a kick-butt performance. The film owes a great deal to his contributions.
In the stands at some international soccer game, Duvall grabs a stray ball from his son. The ball was last kicked by soccer great Pele. The son looks lovingly at the father, "Dad, can I have the ball." The father grimaces then replies, "You can get the next one." That line cracked me up. I loved it. I still love it -- and thankfully, it wasn't just a stray kick, there are plenty of other lines just as sideways funny in the film.
On the negative side, despite a well-deserved momentum, the script (or more likely editing) converts the team of ragtag kids into great players without demonstrated reason, this reduces the effectiveness of the climax and the credibility of the heart side of the picture. With just a little more effort they could have solved this problem.
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