The story tells of the rivalry between Alex 'Hurricane' Higgins - whose natural talent and showmanship transformed the image of the traditional game and captivated audiences across the country - and Steve 'The Nugget' Davis, who under the guidance of manager Barry Hearn dominated the sport throughout the 80s and ushered in a new era of professionalism.Written by
BBC Media Centre
Documentary drama of 1980's Snooker and the characters behind it
In the 1970's the BBC show Pot Black started to create some TV personalities like Ray Rearden and Dennis Taylor. Who would have thought that a program about two men taking turns to hit balls with sticks would be popular but it took off. Pretty soon the world championship snooker tournament was being televised. Millions of viewers proved they had the desire and stamina to watch games that lasted hours, interest in the players grew and the prize money rocketed.
The Rack Pack documents snooker's rise in popularity and how it alternatively made and broke two people. It focuses on Alex Higgins and Steve Davis. We see one personality being created from almost a blank canvas. On the other hand we see a dynamic personality destroyed by inner demons, be repaired and then self destruct.
In parts this film is funny, sad, informative and made me reflect on the need for identifiable personalities in sport. Do we need "bad" boys in our viewing before we really engage? At 88 minutes this film isn't as long as some snooker frames and is well worth your time.
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