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Movies about teams competing at "fictional" new activities
March 5, 2014 12:31 AM   Subscribe

What movies feature teams competing at strange new group activities?

So now I'm watching PITCH PERFECT, about teams of competitive a-capella singers in college.

This makes me think of the STEP UP movies, where synchronized dancers would compete,

and of course the BRING IT ON movies with the cheerleading competitions.

Now I'm not saying that those competitions are actually fictional, but the popular movie format certainly does bring a heightened reality to such ideas.

Even DODGEBALL and BLADES OF GLORY qualify in this category... ....

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What other movies have groups/teams competing at strange cool new group activities?

Has there been a movie about computer programming competitions? or robot-building competitions like MIT's 6.270 ?
posted by shipbreaker to Media & Arts (28 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
Computer Chess
posted by EndsOfInvention at 12:37 AM on March 5


Like quidditch in Harry Potter or competing to kill each other in the Hunger Games?
posted by Jubey at 1:14 AM on March 5 [1 favorite]


Drumlines - about marching band competitions.
posted by patricio at 1:22 AM on March 5


Cool Runnings, about the Jamaican national bobsled team's debut at the 1988 Winter Olympics?
posted by terretu at 3:07 AM on March 5


Actually fictional: BASEketball, a combination of baseball and basketball.

You did not specify that the movie had to be good.
posted by pianissimo at 3:23 AM on March 5 [3 favorites]


Hungergames
posted by pearlybob at 3:36 AM on March 5


Maybe... Duets? (Karaoke competition circuit)
Maybe... Best in Show? (Dog show competitions)

But definitely... you can't have a set with Pitch Perfect, Step Up, and Bring It On, and not include Stick It (2006)
posted by ceribus peribus at 3:53 AM on March 5 [2 favorites]


Rollerball
posted by HuronBob at 4:10 AM on March 5 [4 favorites]


Running Man
posted by Flood at 4:22 AM on March 5


Beerfest! Before I clicked through, I honestly thought the question was going to be inspired by this movie.
posted by Grither at 4:53 AM on March 5 [2 favorites]


These are based off common themes in the movies you listed, rather than straight-out team competition films, but I think might fit the bill for what you're looking for:

It's not the whole focus of the movie, but the camp competition at the end of Meatballs does cram in a lot of what you're asking for and it's a pretty important part of the film. Plus, it's Meatballs.

I'd also suggest Camp (which is a comedy about a theater summer camp - not a competition). It has a lot of the elements of a competition film, but instead of teams it's the casts of the different plays trying to make it all come together.
posted by Mchelly at 4:53 AM on March 5


You Got Served and Battle of the Year are both about breakdance crew competition.

Stomp the Yard is another step-dance competition movie similar to the Step Up series.
posted by drlith at 5:10 AM on March 5


Are you interested in documentaries? If so, Murderball. (There's practically a whole subgenre of documentaries about weird competitions, but most of the ones I've seen are individual rather than team events.)
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 5:24 AM on March 5


If Battlestar Galactica's TV movies qualify, then the sport of Triad, which is some sort of 2-on-2 semi-contact arena basketball (which requires bouncing the ball off the walls before scoring a "basket") qualifies. The game is called "Pyramid" in the new series, but that's due to someone's apparent boneheaded error of swapping the names of the series' ubiquitous gambling card game (with hexagonal playing cards) and the arena basketball game.
posted by Sunburnt at 5:43 AM on March 5




Real Steel
posted by jbickers at 5:54 AM on March 5


Tron and Tron Legacy have "team-deathmatch" lightcycle arena battles - Tron scene, Tron Legacy scene.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 5:58 AM on March 5


Battle Royale
Walking Dead
Glee
posted by oceanjesse at 6:00 AM on March 5


Brooklyn Castle is a documentary about school chess competitions. Wordplay is a documentary about crossword puzzle competitions. Not very "strange" activities, but it was certainly interesting to have a glimpse inside these worlds.
posted by mikepop at 6:45 AM on March 5


The Quidditch match scenes in Harry Potter
posted by rhythm and booze at 7:20 AM on March 5


Best in Show -- about dog breeders.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 7:23 AM on March 5 [2 favorites]


Brassed Off, a fictional film about brass band competitions. A real thing, but pretty obscure unless you are from that community.
posted by Jabberwocky at 7:37 AM on March 5 [1 favorite]


Shaolin Soccer
posted by iviken at 7:41 AM on March 5


In Ender's Game, the cadets compete in a zero gravity game in which team members can freeze one another with stun guns. I think the game is a war simulation.
posted by flyingfork at 8:17 AM on March 5


Balls of Fury - Christopher Walken and ping-pong. Oh yeah.
posted by bluejayway at 9:50 AM on March 5


The 80s-tastic Midnight Madness, featuring the debut of a young Michael J. Fox.
posted by ToucanDoug at 11:10 AM on March 5




The beer/tricycle race in Revenge of the Nerds is not too far off from Rice University's actual Beer Bike, although bikers and chuggers are not usually the same person anymore.
posted by MsMolly at 12:21 PM on March 6


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