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Movie Mom

Quiz: Olympics Movies

posted by Nell Minow

The Olympics have inspired a lot of great (and not-so-great) movies, both fact-based and fictional. Which ones can you identify?
1. A warm-weather country competed in a cold-weather sport in which fact-based Disney film?
2. Which Oscar-winning movie was the story of two Olympic runners?
3. There are two different movies about which real-life Olympic champion runner?
4. Which Olympic decathlete played himself in a movie based on his life?
5. Athletes from rival countries fall in love in this movie that is fiction in more ways than one — it has America competing in an Olympics that in real life the US boycotted.
6. One of the wildest Olympics movies ever made has a team from an almost-bankrupt country where all the citizens have super-athletic ability. Which classic comedian starred?
7. Animals compete in the Olympics in which animated feature?
8. Who stars in a movie about a gold medalist who defects who has to fight for his life when his former coach comes after him?
9. Which real-life Olympic star appeared in one of the biggest musical movie flops of all time?
10. Which movie is the tragic story of one of America’s greatest Olympic athletes being stripped of his medals?
11. Which Olympic medalist appeared in a movie about an athlete starring Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy?
12. Which movie about the Olympics featured Cary Grant?
Bonus question: Which Olympic and world champion became one of the highest paid stars in Hollywood?

  • David Miller

    1) “Cool Runnings”, John Candy, Jamaican Bobsled team…is this also (6)?
    3) “Without Limits”, great movie “Prefontaine” I’ve yet to see. “Without Limits” also has Frank Shorter, and so could be answer to (2).
    4) Bruce Jenner
    Where’s the question about the excellent movie “Miracle”?

  • jestrfyl

    2 – Chariots of Fire
    4 – Could that also be Jim Thorpe of Jessie __?__ (rats, and I’ve met him, too)
    5 – Ice Castles, I think (“toe pick”)
    6-Kevin Bacon – hey, it’s possible, maybe even likely.
    7 – Mary Poppins
    9 – Johnny Weismuller?
    10 – uh, anything since the 2000 Olympics – to many are losing their medals for poor reasons.

  • Nell Minow

    A good beginning, David and Jestryfl! Here’s what’s right so far:
    1. Cool Runnings
    2. Chariots of Fire
    3. Without Limits and Prefontaine
    Keep trying on the rest! And I wanted to do “Miracle” but couldn’t think of a clue that wasn’t too obvious!
    But it’s “Cutting Edge,” not “Ice Castles” that has the “Toepick!” line. I’m fond of both, and here’s a surprise — “Cutting Edge” was written by the same guy who did last year’s hit film “Michael Clayton.”

  • jestrfyl

    11 – Babe Zaharis (spelling?)?
    Bonus – Weismuller?

  • Nell Minow

    Yes to Babe Didrikson Zaharias, who appeared with Tracy and Hepburn in “Pat and Mike.” But for the bonus, think female and not American!

  • Kevin

    6. One of the wildest Olympics movies ever made has a team from an almost-bankrupt country where all the citizens have super-athletic ability. Which classic comedian starred?
    “Million Dollar Legs”, with WC Fields
    7. Animals compete in the Olympics in which animated feature?
    “Animalympics”
    9. Which real-life Olympic star appeared in one of the biggest musical movie flops of all time?
    Bruce Jenner co-starred with The Village People in “Can’t Stop The Music”
    10. Which movie is the tragic story of one of America’s greatest Olympic athletes being stripped of his medals?
    “Jim Thorpe, All-American”, with Burt Lancaster
    12. Which movie about the Olympics featured Cary Grant?
    “Walk, Don’t Run” – his last movie

  • Kevin

    Bonus: Figure skater Sonja Heinie was one of Hollywood’s top draws in the 1930’s.

  • Kevin

    Other “Olympics” movies:
    Gymnast Kurt Thomas attempted to cash his medals in the martial arts mess “Gymkata”
    Alex Karras followed “Blazing Saddles” with the made for TV “The 500 lb. Jerk”, about Olympic weightlifting.
    To be handled with the same tongs and protective gear you use to watch “Birth of a Nation” or “Song of the South” – Leni Riefenstahl’s “Olympia”. Bud Greenspan – producer of numerous Olympic documentaries – effectively used Riefenstahl’s footage to construct “Jesse Owens Returns to Berlin” in 1966.

  • Nell Minow

    Well done, Kevin!!

  • Elana

    The warm weather country that competed in a cold weather event is Jamaica and was shown in Cool runnings. Great movie!

  • undefined

    duhhh, where are the answers?

  • JSR

    Seriously, where are the answers?

  • Mark Magee

    another great, and my favorite, olympic-themed film is ‘tokyo olympiad’…greatest sports documentary ever…

  • Nell Minow

    Thanks, Mark! A great addition!

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