Youngblood (1986 film)

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Youngblood (1986 film) poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byPeter Markle
Produced byPeter Markle
Peter Bart
Patrick Wells
Written byPeter Markle
John Whitman
Music byWilliam Orbit
CinematographyMark Irwin
Edited byJack Hofstra
Stephen E. Rivkin
The Guber-Peters Company
United Artists
Distributed byMGM/UA Entertainment Company
Release date
  • January 31, 1986 (1986-01-31)
Running time
110 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$8 million
Box office$15,448,384

Youngblood is a 1986 American drama sports film directed, co-produced, and co-written by Peter Markle, and starring Rob Lowe, Patrick Swayze, Cynthia Gibb.


Dean Youngblood, a 17-year-old farmhand from rural New York, has dreams of playing in the National Hockey League. Dean voices these dreams to his father who disapproves, however Dean's brother, Kelly, convinces their father to relent. Dean travels to Canada to try out for the Hamilton Mustangs where he demonstrates his offensive skills but displays a lack of physical toughness. Carl Racki, who is competing for a spot, engages him in a fight and quickly defeats him. Despite this, the Mustangs head coach, a former NHL All-Star, selects Dean for the team. Dean also begins a flirtation with the coach's daughter.

After his team mentor, Derek Sutton, is deliberately injured by Racki (now with a rival team), Dean returns home. His brother inspires him to keep playing, and his father teaches him some fighting skills. Dean returns to the team, ready to confront Racki in the final game of the Memorial Cup playoffs.

The game ends with a game-winning goal by Dean with 3 seconds left. As time expires, he confronts and defeats Racki in a fight and is carried off the ice on the shoulders of his teammates.


Many of the other team members in the film were actual junior or NCAA hockey players, including Steve Thomas, Peter Zezel (both of whom had lengthy NHL careers), Don Biggs, and James Richmond.[1]


The filming of Youngblood took place in the east end of Toronto in the summer of 1984. Ted Reeve Arena was used as the setting for the interior of the Hamilton Mustangs home rink while Scarborough Gardens Arena was used for the setting of the arena's exterior; a third city arena was also used for filming.[1][2]

Several of the cast and crew had actual hockey experience and skills, though star Rob Lowe had to learn to skate, and both he and Patrick Swayze, a better skater, used doubles for many of their on-ice skating scenes. Director and writer Peter Markle was a former minor-pro and international player for the USA. Cinematographer Mark Irwin, a Canadian, wore skates and a helmet and devised a special rig for shooting hockey scenes on the ice. The film's hockey consultant Eric Nesterenko was a two decade NHL veteran who also appeared as the father of the film's lead character. Keanu Reeves played goalie growing up and in high school. George Finn, who played villain Carl Racki, was a former OHL enforcer. Many of the other team members were actual NCAA or junior hockey players, some of whom went on to significant NHL careers.[1]

Lowe later said he "hated" learning how to skate. "I don't like any sport where you're already exhausted when you're done putting on the equipment. But that said, once I got the equipment on and was out on the ice, I loved that. I loved hitting people, being hit, skating. I love the exertion and competition, so that was all great. But it's a lot of work putting all of that shit on! Give me a surfboard and let me just paddle into the ocean."[3]


The film gained a mediocre reception, with critics finding the plot derivative.[4][5][6] However, it became a popular VHS video rental and cable TV showing.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Barry, Sal (August 7, 2016). "The Making of 'Youngblood: An Oral History". The Hockey News. Retrieved October 24, 2016.
  2. ^ Fleischer, David (January 19, 2017). "Where the Rob Lowe Cult Classic Youngblood Was Filmed in Toronto". Torontoist. St. Joseph Media. Retrieved August 25, 2017.
  3. ^ Harris, Will (8 February 2017). "Of all his films, Rob Lowe wants you to go back and watch Bad Influence". The AV Club. Retrieved 1 March 2017.
  4. ^ PATRICK GOLDSTEIN (1994-08-26). "Movie Reviews : A Violent 'Youngblood': . . . The Puck Stops Here - Los Angeles Times". Retrieved 2012-08-24.
  5. ^ Maslin, Janet (1986-01-31). "Movie Review - Youngblood - THE SCREEN: ROB LOWE STARS AS 'YOUNGBLOOD' -". Retrieved 2012-08-24.
  6. ^ "Youngblood :: :: Reviews". 1986-01-31. Retrieved 2012-08-24.

External links[edit]