|PAPER LION (director: Alex March; screenwriters: Lawrence Roman/from the book by George Plimpton; cinematographer: Eugene Friedman, Peter Garbarini; editor: Louis San Andres; music: Roger Kellaway; cast: Alan Alda (George Plimpton), Lauren Hutton (Kate), David Doyle (Oscar Barnes, editor), Joe Schmidt, Alex Karras, John Gordy, Mike Lucci, Sugar Ray Robinson, Frank Gifford, Vince Lombardi, Pat Studstill, Roger Brown, Roy Scheider; Runtime: 107; MPAA Rating: G; producer: Stuart Millar; United Artists; 1968)|
|"A popular smart sports film,
playing like a mockumentary, that's filmed at
the facility of the Detroit Lions, with the
real pro football players."
by Dennis Schwartz and
popular smart sports film, playing like a
mockumentary, that's filmed at the facility of the
Detroit Lions, with the real pro football players.
It's based on the book by George Plimpton. The book
was inspired by the articles he wrote for Sports
Illustrated. Plimpton (Alan Alda, his first starring
role) tells how he pretended to be a rookie qb
trying out for the team and going through their
spring training camp. Management knew, while the
players were kept in the dark about his identity.
March ("Mastermind"/"The Big
Bounce"/"The Paradine Case") keeps it simple,
entertaining and light-hearted. The great
Joe Schmidt and Alex Karras were on that
otherwise weak Lions team. It's the kind of football
film that should draw just as many non-football fans
as actual fans. Football knowledge is not required.
There are many sports celebrity cameos, including one
from the great former boxing champ Sugar Ray Robinson.
Lauren Hutton plays Alda's loyal secretary.
REVIEWED ON 4/28/2016 GRADE: B
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
© ALL RIGHTS RESERVED DENNIS SCHWARTZ