World Cup Collection on TheArchive

The World Cup has soared to new global domination heights as massive stadium watch parties and massive stadium upsets are everywhere. And maybe a scandal or controversy here or there....

With USA's defeat of Iran, Japan over Spain, Germany over Costa Rica...there's no doubt a war of the "World" is most certainly on. 

TheArchive enjoys a little rivalry and roots for the underdog so check out our World Cup collection that spotlights the good, the bad, and the in between of football...let's delve into a world of fraud, corruption, and manipulation.

We start with the film Dirty Games, an "expedition to the dirty abyss of professional sports." Benjamin Best (CNN Journalist of the Year 2011) gives us a peek behind the scenes at the all too "fascinating" world of sports to unveil a multi-billion juggernaut. Have a look into how the sports system truly operates.

Now we transition to heroics, legends,and GOATs.

Rick King wrote and directed a fair number of films including The Killing Time starring Beau Bridges and Kiefer Sutherland. None of them were hits per se, though he did win a CableAce Award for his work as director on miniseries Vietnam War StoryKing was also just a writer on certain projects including Point Break which did go on to be a significant hit and spawned a remake just a few years ago. 

He explored some similar territory throughout his work, most notably, the “unlikely buddy” dynamic. In Point Break for example, Keanu Reeves (who plays Utah) gets seemingly bromanced but also blackmailed into a friendship with criminal Bodhi, played by Patrick Swayze. As they were both athletes, therein developed a certain level of camaraderie and respect, despite the two being on very different sides of the law.

In another notable Rick King sports film Hotshotthe legendary Brazilian football (soccer) great and erstwhile thespian Pelé, plays a forgotten champion. He has turned his back on the game until he encounters another great who must overcome his own self defeat to claim the greatness they can only achieve together. 

The Hotshot cast is stellar and stars Jim Youngs (remember Footloose? The tractor scene opposite Kevin Bacon in that game of chicken? THAT Jim Youngs). 

While he’s a solid soccer player, Jimmy (Youngs) is a spoiled, arrogant, troubled, and out of control rich kid. He blows his career with his current team and is suspended. To make things worse, his close friend ends up paralyzed. So hitting rock bottom, Jimmy has an epiphany, seeks out the legendary Santos (Pelé basically playing himself) all in an attempt to channel his wisdom and grace and mount a comeback; and do it all for his paralyzed pal. Well in real buddy fashion, they become fast friends and enjoy a series of shenanigans in Brazil as Pelé becomes the ‘Mr. Miyagi’ to Youngs’ Daniel San. Jimmy is seemingly rehabilitated, and as you would imagine, there is a rousing come from behind denouement that would make any 80’s sports movie fan, well, feel like they may have seen it coming from behind or at least seen it before.
There’s reason to watch if just for Pelé alone, but also because pro soccer in the USA was never as big as the now prescient Mr. King made it look in Hotshot. And Jim Youngs never got another chance to lead a big film like this (maybe for the better). 

Rounding out the cast is Mario Van Peebles playing a Jamaican defender who literally lights up at halftime. Penelope Ann Miller is a knockout as the love interest, and Jimmy Smits can be seen in a tight 80s soccer uniform. Also a knockout.

Pelé has only been in a few movies (including a doc on Netflix, art above), but in Hotshot he's at his best and probably has more lines than in (the admittedly better) Victory. That said, he was in so few movies that TheArchive has 4K restored this sports buddy movie rarity for you to stream free now.

Want more soccer? Check out Kicking It featuring Colin Farrell:

The lives of homeless people are changed forever through an international soccer competition. Kicking It follows six players as they set off for South Africa to play in the Homeless World Cup. 

And then there's Streaker.

Streaking rose to popularity in the early 1970s, as disruption to sporting events to demonstrate rebellion. As the phenomenon grew in prominence across live sporting events, security and event handlers would do their best to diffuse the situation and discourage the daring and baring. 

But alas, the streaking continued. Providing a sense of comedic flare to the otherwise tension-filled dynamic of the game, spectators seem to enjoy both and have come to expect if not demand some nude diversion during the big game.

But not all streakers are created equally, some keep their clothes on and their messages off....

Just the other day in Qatar, during the Portugal v. Uruguay match, a man with a "Save Ukraine" and "Respect for Iranian Women" tee - carrying an LGBTQ+ flag - found his way onto the pitch. But I digress.

In Swiss film STREAKER, the high stakes competitive world of streaking is exposed; money and pride are on the line, and bets are placed to see who can stay on the field the longest.

Teacher and single dad Balz Näf lives with his daughter. After irresponsibly gambling away the money for a new school sports field, he plummets into financial and personal peril. But with the help of his hairdresser, Balz crafts a plan that should quickly generate funds.

Together, they curate a team of professional streakers, infiltrating various sporting events and rigging bets by "predicting" the presence of streakers. 

However, when Balz falls for the policewoman who’s been assigned to keep her eye on him, he must hedge his bets evermore wisely in order to curb her suspicions while still baring all.

Winner of 18 Filmmaking and Festival accolades and in 4K, stream now on TheArchive's Roku Channel.

Take a break from the World Cup and kick it with us on TheArchive.

TheArchive channel is dedicated to aficionados and lovers of story, craft, and silver screen fun – streaming rare, retro, and restored films and classic TV. From indies and series, to Oscar winning documentaries, unearthed MOWs, and a killer horror library, TheArchive delivers forgotten, never-before-seen gems for free and many in 4KMarilynKarloff, and Orson Welles stream alongside ReeseKeanu, and Samuel L. Jackson. Find true stories of QueenHendrix, and Sinatra, an LGBTQ library, MLK bios, and world history docs. TheArchive has the movies and shows you either saw, should’ve seen, or should be watching now!