February 22, 1980. For hockey fans, that day will be forever remembered. "The Miracle on Ice," as it became commonly known, was to some a battle in the Cold War and to others the greatest upset in sports history. But to those who played in the game, it was validation and an opportunity to move on to win an Olympic gold medal. In the United States, hockey has always been the runt of the major sports litter, trailing football, baseball, and basketball in popularity. But, for a few days in Lake Placid 24 years ago, it was suddenly, briefly bigger than all of its siblings.
Miracle is a reasonably straightforward re-telling of how the team was assembled, polished, and pushed into battle under the relentless domination of its coach, Herb Brooks (Kurt Russell). The film ends with a 20-minute re-creation of the classic game, complete with audio excerpts of the original broadcast by Al Michaels (with his immortal call - "Do you believe in miracles? Yes!" - included). For the most part, Eric Guggenheim's screenplay is respectful of the historical record. He takes minimal artistic license, except during some of the quieter scenes when the participants are away from the rink.
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