Thursday, October 07, 2004

cricket films

A reader chided me last night for the post on football in films.
It's over, he said. ( Meaning the finals have been and gone, and my team didn't win)
Topicality has never been my strength, but I have noticed the outbreak of October cricket in the parks, looking overly green this wet spring. Last weekend I saw a match being played in very bucolic conditions, more meadow than paddock, with the grass growing rate outstripping the run rate and the daisies encircling fine leg.
But I take the point and have found a more seasonal link
What films are based around cricket matches or have cricket scenes in them?

Comments: cricket films

Bodyline ...

Outside Edge ...

There's also a great little British film about an aging groundsman and his young black apprentice who treat the pitch as hallowed turf, but I can't bloody well remember what it's called.
Posted by Tony.T at October 7, 2004 02:53 PM

Did you check that link, T?
Might be among those more obscure listings.
(and if we're talking scenes -
Was there a cricket scene in "The Chant Of Jimmy Blacksmith"? )

Meant to post this link to an early film
99 feet of cricket.
Posted by boynton at October 7, 2004 03:03 PM

I'm told this one is a doozie but unfortunately ain't caught it myself...
Posted by nardo at October 7, 2004 03:58 PM

and via IMDB bulletin board:

"The April 2004 edition of The Wisden Cricketer, probably the foremost cricket magazine in the world, had their list of the top 10 cricket moments in movies, and Lagaan come in at number 1. Having just seen the movie, I wholeheartedly agree."

my favourite sports film: 'When We Were Kings'

used to play Super 8 movies as visual backdrop to music affairs; moon walks in backwards slow motion and Ali boxing were regular pieces, incl. that Frazier left hook smash that floored Ali in 'the fight of the century'... one of the most arresting bits of footage I ever seen
Posted by nardo at October 7, 2004 04:32 PM

Yep - Lagaan looks good - at four hours though, it might need a tea break.
That Wisden list would seem to be the elusive thing I was looking for, although the above forum was pretty good.
Haven't seen many Sports Films myself - and (probably terrible to admit) don't think I've seen that famous left hook footage.
Posted by boynton at October 7, 2004 04:51 PM

"Did you check that link, T?"

Posted by Tony.T at October 7, 2004 07:33 PM

There was a very unconvincing dream sequence bowling from American actor (?) Forest Whittaker in (of all things) the crying game.
Posted by Zoe at October 7, 2004 08:03 PM

T - In the link to the Brit film forum there's the following description:

"Just really enjoyed arthurs hallowed ground 1986,on film 4,jimmy jewel played a great part as a cantankerous,perfectionist,cricket groundsman,who really dosen't want anyone to even walk on his pitch let alone play on it,a nice gentle comedy,with the familier faces of david swift,jean boht,michael elphic,exec prod david putnahm,script edited by jack rosenthal."

Thought that might be the one you mentioned. Some good films there, (including a Carry On one.)

Zoe - I remember the sequence. I'll have to check its cred again.
A new question - did the cricket fool you in TCG? ;)
Posted by boynton at October 7, 2004 08:13 PM

Oh. Were we supposed to look through the forum? Once I saw it wasn't about football, or more specifically, Melbourne Football Club player trades, AND had a black background, I bailed/baled.

I'll just go and read it now ...

noooooo noo noooo nooo nooo ummmmm umm hmmmmhh ...

Yes, Arthurs Hallowed Ground was the fillum and most enjoyable it was too. I think I've seen most of those films, but strangely the only one I haven't is one of the ones I mentioned, Bodyline. Strange, no?

They played cricket in Master & Commander too. Have you seen it?
Posted by Tony.T at October 7, 2004 11:17 PM

I'm not a number one fan of the game, tending to agree with whoever it was who said that all cultures have their own definitions of eternity & the British call theirs cricket. But surely the all time howzatt classic is the one at the top of the link site list, The Final Test, starring Jack Warner & Robert Morley & scripted by Terence Rattigan. Apparently it was inspired by Don Bradman's early dismissal in his last Test Match.

Not a classic outside the genre but fair example of '40s British whimsy in which Warner, as in every film he ever made throughout a long career, carries himself like a man in his late 60s while Robert Morley camps it up something rotten.
Posted by Dick at October 8, 2004 11:02 AM

Don't forget the episode of All Creatures Great and Small where a younf Fred Trueman turned out for the local XI.
Posted by Tony.T at October 8, 2004 11:08 AM

T - I haven't seen Bodyline either.
Actually I did see M&C, and forgot about that striking match.
Have you seen Carry On - Follow that Camel?

Dick - I chased the GBS quote and found it in good company here
with Pinter and Wilde also on the team.
Actually it's the langour of the game that I like, 'the organised loafing', 'baseball on valium'.
A DVD has made an appearance in this household, so I may try to see TFT - sounds good.

The episode was "Big Fish Little Fish" (apparently - I had to look it up)
Must have seen it, but can't recall it.
Did a young Geoff Boycott ever visit the vetinry?
Posted by boynton at October 8, 2004 12:04 PM

Didn't Herriot once treat a dicky bird?
Posted by nora at October 8, 2004 03:21 PM

one of my favorite films of all time, losey & pinter's the go-between, has a crucial sequence involving a cricket match, with a very sexy alan bates as batsman (if that's the word). if you haven't seen it, definitely do.
Posted by michaela at October 8, 2004 04:30 PM

Dicky Who?
Posted by Tricky Woo at October 8, 2004 05:37 PM

I read the book a long time ago, Michaela, but funnily enough have never seen the film. Have always meant to.
I fully agree with your assessment of the late great Alan Bates, so may try to obtain the DVD ASAP. For the cricket of course.
Posted by boynton at October 8, 2004 05:43 PM

Not Dicky, Doctor. Dr Who.
Posted by Tristan.F at October 9, 2004 01:08 PM

a very peculiar practice...

(who2 via presurfer)
Posted by boynton at October 11, 2004 12:50 PM

Two recent UK crick flicks

"Wondrous Oblivion" and "Not Cricket: The Basil d'Oliveira Conspiracy" (TV).

And "Shaun of The Dead" and "Spinal Tap" both show what you can do with a 3 pound Gray Nicholls off the pitch.

And for yer vast international audience unacquainted with the smack of leather on willow, Boynie, here's a quick and concise guide to cricket.

"You have two sides, one out in the field and one in. Each man that's in the side that's in goes out, and when he's out he comes in and the next man goes in until he's out. When they are all out, the side that's out comes in and the side thats been in goes out and tries to get those coming in, out. Sometimes you get men still in and not out. When a man goes out to go in, the men who are out try to get him out, and when he is out he goes in and the next man in goes out and goes in. There are two men called umpires who stay all out all the time and they decide when the men who are in are out. When both sides have been in and all the men have out, and both sides have been out twice after all the men have been in, including those who are not out, then stumps are drawn.
Posted by Nabakov at October 17, 2004 06:05 PM

Crick Flicks - marvellous shot that

Must try to see Wonderous Oblivion.
(good name for a blog - as indeed are many of your Lagniappe of another thread. Although Treppenwitz sounds like he could have played for Australia A, or in the ruck for Carlton.)
Posted by boynton at October 18, 2004 12:22 PM

1 comment: said...


And let's not forget the Episode of Inspector Morse 'Deceived by Flight'. It's full of classial music and cricket!