5.9/10
14,481
59 user 26 critic

All the Right Moves (1983)

A high school football player desperate for a scholarship and his headstrong coach clash in a dying Pennsylvania steel town.

Director:

Michael Chapman

Writers:

Pat Jordan (article), Michael Kane

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tom Cruise ... Stefen Djordjevic
Craig T. Nelson ... Nickerson
Lea Thompson ... Lisa
Charles Cioffi ... Pop
Gary Graham ... Greg
Paul Carafotes ... Salvucci
Chris Penn ... Brian (as Christopher Penn)
Sandy Faison Sandy Faison ... Suzie
James A. Baffico James A. Baffico ... Bosko
Mel Winkler Mel Winkler ... Jess Covington
Walter Briggs Walter Briggs ... Rifleman
George Betor George Betor ... Tank
Leon ... Shadow (as Leon Robinson)
Jonas Chaka ... Mouse (as Jonas C. Miller)
Keith Diamond ... Fox (as Keith Ford)
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Storyline

Sensitive study of a headstrong high school football star who dreams of getting out of his small Western Pennsylvania steel town with a football scholarship. His equally ambitious coach aims at a college position, resulting in a clash which could crush the player's dreams. Written by Jerry Milani <jmilani@ix.netcom.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He plays to win See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Sport

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 October 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

All Right See more »

Filming Locations:

Conemaugh, Pennsylvania, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$5,600,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,625,486, 23 October 1983, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$17,233,166
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Tom Cruise's character has been said to be inspired by real life Pennsylvania coach Donald A. Yannessa, as well as two members of his team. See more »

Goofs

When Stefan goes to the field to ask the coach to play in the game, his hair is blowing in the wind. In the reverse angle, his hair is laying down flat. See more »

Quotes

Steff: You're not God, Nickerson. You're just a typing teacher.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Life on Mars: Coffee, Tea, or Annie (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Easy Street
(First Bar Scene)
Performed by Tony Orlando
Music and Lyrics by Chips Moman and Bobby Emmons
Produced by Chips Moman and Brooks Arthur
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Doesn't Really Know What it Wants to Be
6 September 2016 | by ThomasDrufkeSee all my reviews

Sports movies are often stuck in the same old clichéd formula, but more often than not, they work. To All the Right Moves credit, it doesn't follow that winning formula, but it also doesn't necessarily create its own well-strung story.

In one of his first acting roles, Tom Cruise stars alongside Craig T. Nelson and Lea Thompson as his coach and girlfriend respectively. If for nothing else, this film is worth a watch just for those performances alone. Cruise and Thompson prove to be fearless in their risqué high school roles, and Nelson plays a great antagonist and obstacle for Cruise's 'Stefen' character. I can't speak too highly on the film itself, but those performances are certainly worth 90 minutes of your time.

The biggest issue with All the Right Moves is that it actually tries to make too many 'moves' with its story, pun intended. It doesn't really know what it wants to be. On one hand, it's a nice coming of age story with Thompson and Cruise. The next it's an intense football drama between two schools. Or even a film that tackles the heavy themes of class struggle and sexuality, just to name a few. There's just no real focus here. The minute you start to get invested with what Nelson's team is doing, led by Cruise among others, it changes its course to another plot point entirely. I appreciate the film's intentions, it just didn't hit home the ideas that it set out to, and it suffers because of that.

What I can say is that this film was probably more of a product of its time. The soundtrack is blatantly filled with slow and smooth 80's tracks that can be distracting. The sound editing as a whole is pretty poor. The football sequences are borderline amateur. And some of the plot points have been done much better in more recent years. Sure, that's not the film's fault, but it does hinder its re-watchability to an extent. It's fun to watch a young Cruise and Thompson share great chemistry, but there's not a lot beneath that.

+Cruise shows promise

+Attempts to explore deep themes

-But fails at most of them

-Misguided direction

56/100


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