Underdogs (2013 animated film)

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Underdogs
Underdogs 2013 animated film poster.png
Original Argentine release poster
Directed by Juan José Campanella
Produced by
  • Juan José Campanella
  • Mercedes Gamero
  • Gastón Gorali
  • Mikel Lejarza
  • Jorge Estrada Mora
  • Manuel Polanco
Written by
  • Juan José Campanella
  • Gastón Gorali
  • Eduardo Sacheri
Based on Memoirs of a Right Winger
by Roberto Fontanarrosa
Starring
Music by Emilio Kauderer
Cinematography Félix Monti
Edited by
  • Juan José Campanella
  • Abel Goldfarb
Production
companies
  • 100 Bares
  • Antena 3 Films
  • Catmandu Branded Entertainment
  • JEMPSA
  • Prana Studios
Distributed by Universal Pictures International[1]
Release dates
  • 18 July 2013 (2013-07-18)
Running time
106 minutes[2] (Arg./Spa.)
97 minutes[3] (UK)
Country
Language Spanish
Budget $21 million[5]
Box office $25.1 million[6]

Underdogs (known as Metegol in Argentina and The Unbeatables in the United Kingdom) is a 2013 Argentine 3D computer-animated fantasy sports comedy adventure film co-written and directed by Juan J. Campanella. The film is inspired by the short story Memorias de un wing derecho (Memoirs of a Right Wing) by the Argentine writer Roberto Fontanarrosa.[7] Gaston Gorali, co-writer and producer of the film, and Eduardo Sacheri, who worked on the script of Campanella's The Secret in Their Eyes, developed the screenplay with Campanella.

The film is an Argentine production, and was released in Argentina on 18 July 2013, setting an all-time record for an Argentine film opening at the box-office.[5] Costing $21 million, the film is the most expensive Argentine film of all time, and the most expensive Latin American animated feature ever.[5] In 2014, The Weinstein Company acquired the rights to distribute the film in North America. After numerous delays, including an August 2015 theatrical release that was scrapped last minute, the North American English-language version was released on DVD in July 2016.[8] The film was available on Netflix in the United States in June 2016.[9]

The film received indecisive and mixed reviews; it had a 64% "Fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 14 reviews, but scored 38 out of 100 based on 5 reviews on Metacritic, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews".

Plot[edit]

The film begins with the narrator telling his son, Matty, a story before going to sleep, one where he will have to use his imagination.

Many years ago, Jake, a timid boy and the best foosball player around, was working in a bar in a small and quiet town. He loved Laura, a girl he met in the bar, but she did not know.

While showing Laura the foosball table, a kid named Ace arrives and challenges Jake to a game in front of Laura. Although initially the kid beats him, Jake is victorious, and everyone at the bar applauds. Outside of the bar, Ace encounters a manager who offers to take him on.

Seven years later, Jake's simple routine falls apart when Ace becomes the best football player in the world, and returns to the small town to avenge the only defeat in his life.

Now that he is famous, Ace announces that he has purchased the whole village and builds a gigantic football stadium, although he is more interested in owning the foosball table where he lost to Jake and destroying the bar where he was defeated. He also wants to win the affection of Laura.

With foosball, the bar and even his soul destroyed, Jake discovers something magical: in the face of adversity, the town's foosball players talk and plan. Together they embark on a journey full of adventures to save Laura. Along the way, they become a real team.

Cast[edit]

Character Original Spanish UK dub US dub
Amadeo (Jake in the US) David Masajnik (adult)
Luciana Falcón (young)
Rupert Grint (adult)
Darren Boyd (older)
Oscar Leonard (young)
Matthew Morrison (adult)
Shawn Mendes (young)
Capi (Captain Skip in the UK and US) Pablo Rago Ralf Little Taran Killam
Loco (Ziggy in the US) Horacio Fontova Peter Serafinowicz John Leguizamo
Beto (Rico in the UK and US) Fabián Gianola Rob Brydon Eugenio Derbez
Capitán Liso (Gregor in the UK and Captain Rip in the US) Miguel Ángel Rodríguez Alex Norton Bobby Moynihan
Laura (Lara in the UK) Lucía Maciel Eve Ponsonby (adult)
Fern Deacon (young)
Ariana Grande (adult)
Katie Holmes (older)
Bella Thorne (young)
Grosso (Flash in the UK and Ace in the US) Diego Ramos (adult)
Mariana Otero (young)
Anthony Head (adult)
Jack Maison-Hayman (young)
Nicholas Hoult (adult)
Brooklyn Beckham (young)

Production[edit]

The film was announced on 27 November 2009.[10] The voices of the main characters of the cast are Pablo Rago, Miguel Ángel Rodríguez, Fabian Gianola, Horacio Fontova and David Masajnik.[11]

Sergio Pablos, executive producer and creator of the original idea and story for Despicable Me, acted as animation director for 20 minutes of the film, and advised Campanella on direction.[12] The rest of the film was animated under the directions of Federico Radero and Mario Serie.[13]

Puerto Rican band Calle 13 composed and performed the original song of the movie.

Release[edit]

An English-language version of the film was produced in the United Kingdom by 369 Productions with Vertigo Films handling the distribution rights and was released under the name The Unbeatables on 15 August 2014. The UK dub features stars such as Rupert Grint, Rob Brydon, Anthony Head, Ralf Little, Alistair McGowan, Peter Serafinowicz, and Eve Ponsonby.[14][15]

In March 2014, The Weinstein Company acquired distribution rights for the film in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and France, with plans to release their own English-language version of the film under the title Underdogs.[16] The US dub features Ariana Grande, Nicholas Hoult, Matthew Morrison, Katie Holmes, John Leguizamo, Eugenio Derbez, Taran Killam, Bobby Moynihan, Chazz Palminteri, and Mel Brooks.[17] The film was originally going to be released in 2014[16] but was pushed back several times.[18][19] A week before a planned August 2015 release, the film was pulled from the schedule.[20] It is set to be released direct-to-video on 19 July 2016.[21][22]

Reception[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

Based on 14 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, the film received a positive rating of 64%, with an average rating of 5.6/10.[23] However, on Metacritic, the film currently has a rating of 38 out of 100, based on 5 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews".[24]

Box office[edit]

The film opened #1 at the Argentine box-office, earning 16,622,178 pesos on its opening weekend, outperforming other animated blockbusters such as Despicable Me 2 and Monsters University.[25]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Global Biz Briefs: Google-YouTube, 'Foosball 3D', Edinburgh Film Festival". Deadline. May 31, 2012. Retrieved May 31, 2012. 
  2. ^ "Calificaciones". INCAA. Comisión Asesora de Exhibiciones Cinematográficas. Retrieved 3 December 2016. 
  3. ^ "UNDERDOGS (U)". British Board of Film Classification. 29 July 2014. Retrieved 11 August 2015. 
  4. ^ a b Weissberg, Jay (September 25, 2013). "San Sebastian Film Review: 'Foosball'". Variety. Retrieved September 4, 2016. 
  5. ^ a b c Hopewell, John (19 July 2013). "Universal's 'Foosball' Smashes Argentine Records". Variety. Retrieved 21 July 2013. 
  6. ^ "Underdogs (2015) - Box Office Mojo". Box Office Mojo. Amazon.com. Retrieved 8 May 2015. 
  7. ^ "FOOSBALL 3D". Film Factory Entertainment. Retrieved 30 March 2012. 
  8. ^ Milligan, Mercedes. "Underdogs Starring Ariana Grande Arrives July 19", Animation Magazine, July 11, 2016
  9. ^ Figueroa, Jesus (June 18, 2016). "UNDERDOGS Features the Voice Talent of Eugenio Derbez, John Leguizamo in the Animated Family Comedy". This Funktional. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  10. ^ Newbery, Charles (27 November 2009). "Campanella lines up animated feature". Variety. Retrieved 31 March 2012. 
  11. ^ Gallagher, Brian (18 October 2010). "Juan Jose Campanella Directing Metegol". MovieWeb. Retrieved 30 March 2012. 
  12. ^ Hopwell, John (December 1, 2012). "Argentine helmer looks to animation". Variety. Retrieved August 8, 2015. 
  13. ^ "Metegol (2013)". British Film Institute. Retrieved August 8, 2015. 
  14. ^ Taylor, Matthew (20 May 2016). "Film of the week: The Unbeatables". Sight & Sound. Retrieved 4 September 2016. 
  15. ^ "Metegol (2015)". British Film Institute. Retrieved 4 September 2016. 
  16. ^ a b McNary, Dave (17 March 2014). "Weinstein Co. Buys Animated 'Foosball,' Re-Titled as 'Underdogs'". Variety. Retrieved 17 March 2014. 
  17. ^ Gallagher, Brian (14 October 2014). "'Underdogs' Animated Comedy Adds Ariana Grande and Nicholas Hoult". MovieWeb. Retrieved 14 October 2014. 
  18. ^ Lang, Brent (10 June 2014). "'Paddington' Shifts to Christmas Release, Underdogs Decamps for 2015". Variety. Retrieved 10 June 2014. 
  19. ^ Fleming Jr., Mike (6 February 2015). "Animated Soccer Pic 'Underdogs' Gets August 14 Berth From TWC". Deadline.com. Retrieved 6 February 2015. 
  20. ^ Lowe, Kinsey (7 August 2015). "'Ice Age 5′ Gets Title, Date Change; Weinstein Co. Adjusts 'About Ray'". Deadline. Retrieved 8 August 2015. 
  21. ^ "June 2016: Volume 1" (PDF). Rentrak. Retrieved 19 June 2016. 
  22. ^ Milligan, Mercedes. "Underdogs Starring Ariana Grande Arrives July 19", Animation Magazine, July 11, 2016
  23. ^ "Underdogs". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved 13 August 2015. 
  24. ^ "Underdogs Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
  25. ^ "Argentina Box Office July 18–21, 2013". Box Office Mojo. Amazon.com. Retrieved 19 April 2014. 

External links[edit]