Grading Hollywood's Goalkeepers

Everybody Soccer welcomes siblings Tim and Sarah Dobrowolski to the site. The Dobrowolskis have an accomplished goalkeeping family, with Tim entering his third year with Louisville City while Sarah is currently finishing her junior year at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside. Both goalkeeping siblings bring in years of experience on the field and in the theaters to help break down Hollywood's best goalkeepers. For more inquiries on goalkeeping in film, you can find Tim and Sarah online at @timdobro and @sarahdobro.


Bend It Like Beckham

Bill: I know what you’re thinking and yes, I completely agree, this is quite the damning advertisement for Umbro gloves. If flapping wildly at a shot hit straight down the middle of the goal isn’t enough to stop a shot that’s moving at two miles an hour, then I can’t imagine those gloves are worth anything. Aside from the glove malfunction, the goalkeeper should probably set up a better wall than one that is busy transforming into elderly women and back into baggily dressed soccer players. Grade: B-

Tim: I’m never one to complain about the style of goalkeeper jerseys throughout history, but man was that green a hideous color. Besides the fashion blunder, I had two issues with our goalkeeper. First, I don’t recall seeing any communication between the goalkeeper and her wall. Sometimes the environment will swallow up the goalkeeper’s voice, in this case it seemed to be overbearing opera music. Therefore the goalkeeper needs to use any method necessary. Second, it seemed as though the goalkeeper was just as shocked as our main character about the ever-transforming wall! Grade: C+

Sarah: Two things come to mind when I watch this clip, first is how poor the foul is. Was it truly deserving of a yellow card? I will give props to the actor for faking it pretty well though. The second thing that comes to mind is seeing the goalkeeper set up her wall clinging to her near post, and then watching her bat at the shot like a fly is about to buzz right into her mouth. Sub-par shot followed by sub-par goalkeeping. Although I would be terrified too if my Indian mothers and grandmothers were my hallucinated wall! Grade: C


Shaolin Soccer

Tim: Other than the disturbing lack of faith portrayed by many of the coaches and players, this clip shows strong determination and belief in oneself. The hand-eye coordination displayed by the goalkeeper is only attained by those who master the highest levels of clarity and transcendence. What I’m most impressed by is the flight of the counterattack ball. It had a near perfect spin and pace that allowed the forward to make a beautiful one-touch volley. Grade: A-

Sarah: I have never seen this movie, but man do I wish this was how soccer was played. This is the ultimate collaboration between soccer and Avatar the Last Airbender. The goalkeeper handled the shot with beauty and elegance. Starting with a foot save that was brought to the hands, she then turned to her teammate for a tactful counter-attack turned goal. For a bonus they shamed their opponent and their families by literally ripping their clothes off with the sheer power of the shot. Mention note: need to learn how to harvest the powers of the earth and teach it to the youngins. Grade: A+

Bill: I’ve always been a big fan of removing demonic possession from the game and this is a great example of a goalkeeper standing strong in the face of wicked demonry. So it’s nice to see a big corporation like Puma supporting the righteous cause. While a bit unconventional, the distribution is spot on and helps shed the blinders to what the other goalkeeper is: a lousy schmuck. Overall a strong performance but negative points for not using the W handshape for a hard shot on frame. Grade: B+


She’s the Man

Sarah: This is a classic soccer movie for any girl. The one thing that drives me nuts, besides the totally unrealistic planning of a second shot off of the goalkeeper save, is that Amanda is playing with her hair down. Any girl can relate that this is totally a pain in the ass and that there is no way she would last five minutes running around with it down. Goalkeeper-wise that was a great first save made by the defending goalkeeper, no less off of a penalty kick. Too bad he couldn’t recreate that save on the opposite side of the net! Just goes to show that girls rule and boys have cooties. Grade: A

Bill: The goalkeeper makes a great penalty save but follows it up with an awkward dive back to his right on the rebound. His shoulders are turned and he's basically skipping towards the post instead of laying out again. Unfortunately, Sarah is probably on to something with the goalkeeper’s high cootie content. It looks like it really held him back from committing to the save. Hopefully, the goalkeeper saw a doctor soon after to receive his vaccinations. Grade: B-

Tim: *Trying not to think about the crush I used to have on Amanda Bynes* I commend the goalkeeper for making a fine save on the initial pk, but what was that atrocious rebound? I understand the obsession over Channing Tatum, but is it that bad to where you feel obligated to give him and Amanda a second chance at a goal? I have to agree with my colleague Bill: the goalkeeper’s form back to the other side was worse than the rebound. Grade: B


Kicking and Screaming

Bill: You remember the goalkeeper in youth soccer who just sat on their line for the entire game, never diving for anything, and let a defender take the goal kicks? That goalkeeper would be better than this one. There’s no plan here. He just barrels out hoping his reckless approach just happens to work out. Pass. I'd rather have traffic cone kid. Grade: F

Tim: I wish my AYSO games were as lit as this one was after the game-winning goal went in. That looked a lot like the 2017 USL Championship postgame. For the goalkeeping, there’s not much to be said. I think I would take Plank from Ed, Edd, and Eddy over this guy. How did they manage to make it to the final with this jabroni in between the pipes? Grade: F

Sarah: I do not know why they did not call 911 after that goal because Sam’s move around the goalkeeper absolutely broke his ankles. The goalkeeper couldn’t hold his ground. It looked as though he maybe needed to run to the bathroom. He also could not have attacked the forward/ball in a worse way. I think it’s time for this goalkeeper to hang up the cleats and find a different sport. Grade: D



Penalty save, starting at 10:00

Tim: The hand strength of Sylvester Stallone is extremely impressive, not to mention his ability to follow the ball into hands and eventually tuck and roll. Another fine example of the Allied powers showing the world why Fascism sucks. Grade: A+

Sarah: I always find it interesting to watch older soccer. It's amazing to see how the goalkeepers' abilities and skills evolve as the sport grows. In this goalkeeper-era, we see that their arms are baskets and they must catch that way. We also see the bold “no gloves” tactic. Risky, if you ask me. The key moment is at the end: the stare down. No words need to be said, just the glare from one player to another is enough to say “my balls are bigger than yours. I will save this shot”. Grade: A

Bill: Before going on to beat the best the Red Army had to offer, Rocky Balboa started his sporting career off strong by defeating the Axis alongside Pelé and Bobby Moore. Decades later we have endless hoopla over the advancement of goalkeeping equipment but at the end of the day, you can’t say any goalkeeping gloves have ever aided in the defeat of the Nazis. No, it was superior hand strength, pristine form, and insurmountable self-belief that propelled the Allies to win this war. Grade: A+