Goal III: Taking on the World
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|Goal! III: Taking on the World|
|Directed by||Andrew Morahan|
|Produced by||Mike Jefferies
|Written by||Mike Jefferies
|Music by||Mark Thomas|
|Editing by||Giles Bury|
Goal! III: Taking on the World is the third part of the association football Goal! film trilogy, directed by Andrew Morahan written and produced by Mike Jefferies from the first two Goal! films. Unlike its two predecessors, this film did not have a theatrical release and was instead released on 15 June 2009 straight to DVD and Blu-ray in the United Kingdom.
In the third installment of the football drama trilogy Goal!, Kuno Becker returns as Mexican footballer Santiago Muñez, who, along with his best friends and England national team players Charlie Braithwaite (Leo Gregory) and Liam Adams (JJ Feild), are selected for their respective national teams at the 2006 FIFA World Cup Finals in Germany
However, as all of them attend the shooting of a film Braithwaite is featured in, tragedy befalls them. All three best friends and Braithwaite's new love interest and soon to be fiancée Sophia Tardelli (played by Kasia Smutniak) suffer a car accident which puts Muñez out of contention through injuries. Meanwhile, Liam Adams discovers to his horror that he has a new daughter, Bella, from former love interest June (played by Anya Lahiri). This only adds to Liam's preexisting alcoholism and release from Real Madrid. It is revealed that Muñez is set to return to England as a Tottenham Hotspur player under a two-year contract, along with Adams, who re-signs for Newcastle United, the original club of both ex-Real players. The film goes on to depict the World Cup from the English perspective. Liam scores against Sweden (2-2), assisted by a header from Charlie, and England qualify for the knock-out stages. However, in the match against Ecuador, Braithwaite is injured, and later collapses in the changing room. Braithwaite is rushed to hospital, and dies on the way from an aneurysm (from the car accident). England crash out of the quarter-finals against Portugal as Adams misses a crucial penalty against Portuguese keeper Ricardo while Cristiano Ronaldo converts.
Adams later proposes June to marry him. Santiago Munez is the Best Man. During his wedding speech he remembers Charlie and his eyes get teary. As confetti is thrown on Liam and June, Italy are shown lifting the World Cup Trophy after beating France on penalties in the final.
Also following the tournament around Germany in their St. George's Cross festooned camper van are the "Geordie Boys", whom we first met back in the first Goal! film. Providing the entertaining fans' perspective of the matches are Newcastle United die-hards Gordon (Mike Elliott), Foghorn (Christopher Fairbank), Walter (Jack McBride), and Phil (Craig Heaney) in their drunken, womanizing adventures in Germany.
Unlike in the first two films, Roz, Gandhi, Glen Foy, and Gavin Harris do not feature in the film. Santiago implies that he and Roz did not get back together following their separation. As shown is the second movie, Foy was fired by Santiago. As for Harris, it was time he retired. All actual professional footballers are shown through stock World Cup footage. The sporting role of the actors in this film is limited to the green screen. In selected scenes, an unknown bald man is used as a double for Sven-Göran Eriksson. This movie reveals the possible end of goal trilogy as the dream ends.
- Leo Gregory as Charlie Braithwaite
- JJ Feild as Liam Adams
- Kuno Becker as Santiago Muñez
- Nick Moran as Nick Ashworth
- Tamer Hassan as Ronnie
- Kasia Smutniak as Sophia Tardelli
- Anya Lahiri as June
- Wendy McGregor Fitzsimmons as Sue
- David Hagan as David Beckham
Appearances were made by the following professional footballers and officials at the FIFA World Cup via stock footage only.
The film received overwhelming negative response by critics and audiences. On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, audiences gave it a 9% score, based on 93 reviews, with only 9 of them scoring a 3.5 or higher, with criticism focusing on the fact that it has little to do with the previous two films. Some people even suggested that it should have won the Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Movie of the Decade. On IMDb, based on 5435 reviews, the film scores 3.4 out of 10.
In his review for the website Shadows on the Wall, Rich Cline gave the film 2 out of 5 stars and wrote: "The conclusion of the officially sanctioned Fifa trilogy oddly shifts the attention away from the central character Santi to focus on two English players instead. The result is watchable and lively, but still a bit corny."