Waking up with "We Are The Champions" by Queen stuck in your head is more than enough to get the gears turning and the wonder machine working on trying to figure out whatever happened to heartwarming, clever, well-written kids sports movies like The Mighty Ducks and The Sandlot. Airbud does not count, nor do the many sequels where Airbud has to play soccer or football. Somehow Beethoven is close, although that didn't really involve sports in any way. But seriously, where did these films go? When and why was it decided that all kids movies must be some type of animation? (And on that note, why are all animated movies now done in that Pixar style rather than drawn? Sorry, I just don't like that stuff. It feels effortless and generic, like the bad Flash animations Flash tutorials have you make.)
I think maybe part of it is that the actors who rocked those old school kids sports movies have all grown up into gross adults and stuff. For instance, I rented this awesomely bad-looking horror movie a while back because it had the fat kid from The Sandlot (he was also the goalie in The Big Green) in it, but it turns out he lost weight when he grew up. LAME. There are some people who just shouldn't be allowed to not be fat; Wayne Knight, better known as Newman from Seinfeld, is another one. That guy just would not be hilarious if he was thin. Who would want to see a dilophosaurus maul a thin guy? Not me. Not even if they played the same scream three times in a row.
Somewhere along the way, the sincerity in kids movies just evaporated. Oh sure, there are probably some good ones that came out in recent years, but I seriously doubt that people will still be making t-shirts of their catch phrases twenty or thirty years from now. I bring that up because I saw an awesome "You're Killin' Me, Smalls!" shirt the other day and wanted the crap out of it, but I had to pass it up because I am poor. But that's okay, because I've got my memories, unlike today's kids. When they grow up and go to college and be poor, there's no way they're going to see shirts of Bolt or Cars and want them. There's just no way! I would seriously bet my roomie's right pinkie against it.