Rolling Stone - 01/20/2000
Variety - 12/20/1999
"A rambunctious, hyperkinetic, testosterone-and-adrenaline-drenched look at that obsession known as pro football..."
Entertainment Weekly - 02/18/2000
"...As exhausting as it is exciting....Jagged and alive..." -- Rating: B
Premiere - 10/01/2000
"?Stone once again brilliantly captures the intensity of combat?" -- 3 out of 5 stars - A Satisfying Rental
Box Office - 02/01/2000
"...Stone brands ANY GIVEN SUNDAY with his trademark extreme close-ups and disorienting handheld camerawork, creating a position for the audience right on the field where it can hear every call and feel every hit..."
USA Today - 12/22/1999
"...There are so many basic dramatic truths in its age-vs.-youth/pragmatism-vs. -tradition conflict that any fan of sports movies should be carried along..."
Los Angeles Times - 12/22/1999
"...Energetic....Stone pours on the razzle-dazzle..."
Chicago Sun-Times - 12/22/1999
"...A smart sports movie....The film's dialogue scenes are effective....The dramatic scenes are worth it. Pacino has some nice heart-to-hearts with Quaid and Foxx..."
Uncut - 03/01/2005
"Quaid is strong but sympathetic..."
Oliver Stone's hard-hitting look at the adrenaline-fueled world of pro football stars Al Pacino as Miama Sharks coach Tony D'Amato. Having just lost his star quarterback, Jack Rooney (Dennis Quaid), he's forced to use the erratic Willie Beamen (Jamie Foxx) off the bench, hoping he can resuscitate his team, which is floundering on the field and in attendance figures. If not, Christina Pagniacci (Cameron Diaz), the team's new owner, may be drop-kicking him to a new destination.
Oliver Stone delves into his love-hate relationship with pro football in this high-impact film, thriving on the game's adrenaline rush while revealing its ultimate corruption. When legendary Miami Sharks quarterback Cap Rooney (Dennis Quaid) is badly injured in a game, coach Tony D'Amato (Al Pacino) is forced to reach deep into his bench for Willie Beamen (Jamie Foxx). The third-stringer's injury-plagued career and difficulty with maintaining focus make him a dubious commodity at best. But Beamen, aware of what this opportunity could mean, starts playing at a much higher level than ever before, planting championship hopes in the minds of Miami fans. The extraordinary success of Beamen, an athlete whose flamboyance contradicts everything the Lombardi-like D'Amato believes about the game, makes the coach wonder whether his time is passing. To add to his problems, Christina Pagniacci (Cameron Diaz), a young woman who has inherited ownership of the team from her late father, is pressuring him to win now, and at any cost. Will D'Amato be able to pull the team together for a final run at the championship' The film conveys a vivid sense of the atmosphere of pro football and features a finely modulated performance by Pacino.