Rotten Tomatoes
Cancel Movies Tv shows Shop News Showtimes

The Great Match

2006 1h 28m Comedy List
Reviews 81% Audience Score 250+ Ratings
Three different tribal groups have varying amounts of success in finding a place to watch the 2002 World Cup soccer match between Brazil and Germany. Read More Read Less

Audience Reviews

View All (30) audience reviews
Audience Member What an enjoyable heart-felt ride! Loved this film! Cultures form such different parts of the world displaying the same commitment level to a communal playful experience that happens only once every four years. Really well-chronicled by the film makers. Some of the conversations were hysterical as people became impatient trying to get to a TV or maintain the signal to not miss an important moment. "Americans hit a ball with a stick...Isn't that progress?" The lengths people went to was really extraordinary. An Amazonian native running around the jungle with a "9" painted on his back representing his favorite player, an Arabic nobleman from a bygone era sitting in "the" chair being a dick and opposed to the Africans supporting Brazil, and a Mongolian lieutenant at odds with the Brazilian-supporting nomads due to his faith in "German superiority." The only place where there wasn't any friendly competition was of course in Brazil as both the tribesman and transplants were rooting for the same team. Great film. Lots of fun. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 02/09/23 Full Review Audience Member Overly precious and obvious. Reminds me of the sort of movie used for filler on weekend morning television in the 70s (but with occasional foreign language profanity). Occasional - very occasional - effective moments. Rated 2 out of 5 stars 01/12/23 Full Review John A This is a whimsical take on the universality of sport - in this case soccer. I really liked it and give it 5 stars. John Rated 5 out of 5 stars 09/26/12 Full Review Audience Member Entertaining, beautiful, fun and thought provoking especially for soccer lovers Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 02/25/23 Full Review Audience Member I don't think being a soccer fan would have helped much on this movie. It sounds cool enough - diehard fans in the remotest of places going to extraordinary lengths (by Western standards) to see the big soccer match. I suspect this movie has delusions of grandeur, but the themes are all rather shallow and further hammed up for Western sensibilities. Soccer unites the unlikeliest of non-Western people through the Western technical marvel of television. Soldiers and nomads in Mongolia, indigenous tribesmen and Western lumber raiders in the rainforest of Brazil, and anachronistic desert royalty with modern-day Arabs & Africans in Niger. The pretensions are manufactured, for the most part. None of the people involved in this film are significantly altering their way of life - rather they incorporate the novelty of television into established routines and ways of doing things. If television is understood as metaphorical for the insidiousness of Western values and technology, in every instance that insidiousness has been met by and large by a wall of apathy and very deliberate choosing. The Mongolian nomads are still nomads, but they follow power lines now as much as the pasturelands. The Brazilian tribesmen are little bothered or concerned with television except for the big game, when they have to find all of the necessary components to watch the game. And the Niger desert-dwellers are all interested in the game (and under cover Playboy magazines), but they are hardly uprooting their lifestyles in order to see it. Nomadic peoples have always gathered for important events that bind them together in ways that under normal circumstances didn't happen. Now that television and soccer are added to the list, it can hardly be seen in itself as part of a spreading Western evil. It's just a more recent addition to an existing list of Important Stuff. That aside, the movie is contrived. The dialogue is stiff and awkward. While there are humorous moments (mostly early on in the film), they are painfully delivered. Rather than showing us actual people and what is actually important to them, we are given a caricature of people and what might be important to them. The effect seems very condescending (even though it may not actually be - it may be very authentic in capturing these vastly different peoples). The effect wears thin after about 30 minutes, and it feels as though the director and writer were trying to fill out the remaining 60 minutes of film. If you're a soccer fanatic, you might be able to empathize with the drive behind these people - but I don't think that such empathy is required to appreciate the movie. It just might make it more bearable. Rated 2 out of 5 stars 02/09/23 Full Review Audience Member Divya picked it off the library shelf by chance and thought it was a great teething toy... so brought it home and it turned out to be a great pick! Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 02/11/23 Full Review Read all reviews
The Great Match

My Rating


Cast & Crew

Movie Info

Synopsis Three different tribal groups have varying amounts of success in finding a place to watch the 2002 World Cup soccer match between Brazil and Germany.
Gerardo Olivares
Stefan Beiten, José María Morales, Andre Sikojev, Sophokles Tasioulis
Gerardo Olivares, Chema Rodríguez
Production Co
Wanda Films S.L.
Original Language
Release Date (Streaming)
Jun 16, 2016
1h 28m