During the winter months, most NHL Olympic hockey stars are too busy to just sit and relax. But Chicago Blackhawks defensive stud Duncan Keith manages to find a little time to chill and watch flicks. His DVD Pick of the Week is all about action, unity and freedom.
Braveheart [Paramount] Athlete’s Choice: Duncan Keith
Release Date: 1995
Starring: Mel Gibson, Angus Macfadyen, Patrick McGoohan, Brendan Gleeson and Sophie Marceau
During the 13th century, King Edward I (McGoohan) occupied much of Scotland, ruled with an iron fist and killed anyone who tried to stand up to the English army. After his father and brother are killed in battle, young William Wallace (Gibson) is taken away and brought up by an uncle who teaches him to think with his mind, not with his muscle.
Years later, when Wallace returns home, his dream is to marry his childhood love and lead a family life, running a small farm. Once English soldiers kill his wife, however, Wallace, with nothing left to lose, rebels, attacks the English stationed in his town, and forms a band of freedom fighters to win Scotland back.
Based on historical events and facts, Braveheart is the story of men who risk their lives for the freedom of an entire country. Filled with action, drama and lots of blood, the film celebrates the bonding of a band of brothers, but with a Scottish accent.
STACK’s Take: Since ’95, just about every high school locker room in America has echoed the speech Wallace gives before the battle of Stirling Bridge. This is one of those non-sports flicks that can pump athletes up before a big game. It’s all about underdogs uniting in common cause to defeat a more powerful opponent.
On a personal note: I remember watching this movie during two-a-days with my high school football team to get ready for a long, grueling season.