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World Cup Flashback

Just got done watching "The 2006 World Cup Film: The Grand Finale" (from NetFlix). The documentary brought back wonderful memories of four weeks in Germany last summer, but at 1 hour and 52 minutes, it needed to be cut by at least 20 minutes.

There are some nice flashbacks -- most notably Argentina's 26-pass masterpiece leading to a goal against Serbia and the yellow/red card fiasco between Portugal and the Netherlands -- but oddly, many of the tournament's finest moments and goals are ignored in favor of extended "highlights" from, for instance, England-Portugal. (Where is Maxi Rodriguez's stunner against Mexico? Or the Germany-Poland thriller?)

Pierce Brosnan provides commentary, and while he has the voice and subtle accent for such a presentation, he inexplicably goes silent for long stretches. He does get a little excited discussing the Brazilians, but like that underperforming team in this World Cup, the effort is fleeting.

The field-level angles are elegant and revealing, but do not match the quality of some past soccer documentaries or, for that matter, what NFL Films does every week during the American gridiron season.

I ended up skipping around a bit, restless with the filmmakers' unsatisfying selections. Once I got to the Italy-Germany semifinal, however, I put the remote down for good -- a breathtaking match on a spellbinding night in Dortmund's cauldron of an arena. This was what I was waiting for, and the film captures it vividly. Too bad the rest of the documentary couldn't match it.

A worthwhile rental, nonetheless, but don't get your hopes up.

Has anyone else seen it? Thoughts?

By Steve Goff  |  March 21, 2007; 12:12 AM ET
Categories:  World  
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Comments

not seen it yet, but sounds very cool.

Posted by: Peter | March 21, 2007 1:46 AM | Report abuse

thanks for the tip, yo. going to check that out.

Posted by: fever | March 21, 2007 2:32 AM | Report abuse

I watched it twice and sat through it both times because...I'm a big soccer fan..and was laid up with a broken leg...

I watched it alone and then at a family gathering where pretty much all are soccer fans...and still most didn't even come close to making it halfway through.

Soccer fans should definately see it and temper their expectations as to not be dissapointed.

Your analysis is spot on...some parts drag...others should have been included. I wish they'd touched on all of the knockout matches...instead they skipped a bunch.

The yellow card fiasco (portugal/holland) was pretty funny. not sure why the three yellow card fiasco was included...didn't fit was kind of stupid.

Field level footage was real cool. Fan noise..player skill on the ball was real clear.

Not sure if any of you have seen the older world cup and euro championship highlight videos. Way, way better. I permanently borrowed the 92 Euro championship video from a friend and it plays like a story with great highlight footage and storytelling. I've seen the 86 and 90 WC highlight videos and they were similar.

Those highlight videos told a story that flowed...was interesting and had great soccer highlights.

06 video was disjointed...didn't flow until the end..as goff quite correctly states....

Posted by: Matt Y | March 21, 2007 4:11 AM | Report abuse

It was a good video. Any soccer fan will enjoy it. True, there are highlights that did not make it onto the video. But I learned long ago that these Fifa films have an England bias, hence the long feature on England-Portugal to the exclusion of a lot of other good material. Apprently it is the England fans that buy most of the Fifa world cup videos, hence the disproportionately large amount of coverage they get.

Posted by: Ron | March 21, 2007 6:21 AM | Report abuse

Whoa, the Goff-meister intruding into the Stephen Hunter, movie review territory! What's next, sniper novels? :)

I'll look for it, thanks. I love this stuff and may be the only one in the house during spring break.

Posted by: JkR | March 21, 2007 8:06 AM | Report abuse

There is a German film, called something like "Amazing Summer", not really sure, that goes behind the scenes with the German National Team, that is supposed to be THE film about WC 06. The director was with Klinsy & Co. the whole time, even shot footage from the bench during games, everything. Supposed to be great. Anyone know the correct name, or seen it?

Posted by: grotus | March 21, 2007 8:09 AM | Report abuse

Deutschland: Ein Sommermaerchen (Germany: A summer fairy tale) by Soenke Wortmann

Posted by: Bill Urban | March 21, 2007 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the tip!

Posted by: Goff | March 21, 2007 9:16 AM | Report abuse

SG--"Pierce Brosnan provides commentary, and while he has the voice and subtle accent for such a presentation, he inexplicably goes silent for long stretches."

Would you rather Dave "Swing-and-a-miss" O'Brien talking all over the action about Glasgow United and Wolverhampton Wolves? I think not! And don't forget the pop-up graphics that obscure the only replay of the penalty that they didn't show in the first place...

Oh, wait. ESPN did NOT produce this. Nevermind.

Thx,

Jay!

Posted by: JayRockers! | March 21, 2007 9:42 AM | Report abuse

SG--"Pierce Brosnan provides commentary, and while he has the voice and subtle accent for such a presentation, he inexplicably goes silent for long stretches."

Would you rather Dave "Swing-and-a-miss" O'Brien talking all over the action about Glasgow United and Wolverhampton Wolves? I think not! And don't forget the pop-up graphics that obscure the only replay of the penalty that they didn't show in the first place...

Oh, wait. ESPN did NOT produce this. Nevermind.

Thx,

Jay!

Posted by: JayRockers! | March 21, 2007 9:42 AM | Report abuse

How can ANY highlight package of the '06 World Cup NOT show Maxi Rodriguez' goal? That may be one of the top 5 World Cup goals of all time!

Posted by: Dsmac | March 21, 2007 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Why no Maxi goal? Well, I figure that Pierce and the Brits are still pissed off about that whole Faulkland Islands bit, so they take any chances they can get to snub the Argentines.

Posted by: ohboyohboy | March 21, 2007 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Nothing can stop the Goff-multimedia machine now!

Soccer articles in print. Check
Soccer articles online. Check
Blog. Check
DVD reviews. Check
Cheese reviews. TBD
TV personality. TBD


The Post can just fire everybody else, and let Goff do it all!

Posted by: Kim | March 21, 2007 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Too bad there is scant Germany-Poland coverage, I thought that was one of the best matches (if not the best match) of the whole tournament.

Posted by: Tweaked | March 21, 2007 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Brosnan's Irish, not British. But Maxi Rodriguez's goal should be in a documentary about the 2006 WC, especially considering how good that match was.

Posted by: arsenal | March 21, 2007 12:40 PM | Report abuse

"The Post can just fire everybody else, and let Goff do it all!"

I second that. His is the only stuff I read, in print or on-line.

He's nailed International Soccer Analyst with the appearance on Oz radio and will soon be on the "Wait, let me check the blogs" TV show. (Hint to Steve: Dress nicely, your editor was merciless with Wise and Boswell).

Posted by: I-270 Exit 1 | March 21, 2007 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Sir, that was a damn good review.

Posted by: sitruc | March 21, 2007 6:05 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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