Last night Karyn and I wanted to watch a movie called Saraband, but before we did I wanted to check to see if a certain burned DVD worked in our player. I put Murderball in the player, and it worked. I had seen this documentary at the Met last summer, and I loved it. I have recommended it to anyone who would listen. However, Karyn hadn't seen it. As the first scene rolled, Karyn said, "let's watch this instead." An hour and a half later, all she could say was, "that was a great movie."
Ostensibly about wheelchair rugby (a.k.a. Murderball), the film is really about the human spirit. The opening scene shows a quadriplegic dressing himself, and we immediately feel sorry for him. As the film progresses, though, we realize these guys are tough. Yes, their stories are sad, as most of them remember very well what it was like to walk, but these guys are amazing. They have turned a horrible tragedy into a managable difficulty. Hell, one guy even talks about how easy it is to pick up chicks from a wheelchair--and yes, they can have sex (you'll just have to watch the movie to get an explanation.) Parallel to the rugby team's story is the story of Keith, a recent quad due to a motorcycle accident. It follows him through rehab and his amazingly difficult mental adjustment to paralyzed life. In the end, Keith can't wait to buy his Murderball chair. If you are like Karyn and me, you will cry during this movie. But, when the credits roll, you will be inspired by the indomitable spirit these guys embody.
I absolutely hate cliched inspirational films. While this film is inspirational, it is no cliche. I can honestly say Murderball is my favorite film of 2005.