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Greatest Athletic Performance by a Non-pro Jock


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A couple weeks ago I had a discussion on a thread in which Robert Redford's performance in "The Natural" was brought up and how impressed I am with his athleticism and convincing skills as a major league baseball player.


With all the sports movies that have been produced over the years, what actor, gave the most convincing athletic performance in a film?


This must exclude, obviously, those who either played themselves like Jackie Robinson in his biopic, or Johnny Weissmuller as Tarzan since he was an Olympic gold medal winner in swimming. However, I think those who played boxers in films, yet fought as amateurs like Cagney might be okay. There are other examples in other sports, but I think everyone ought to get my drift on this one.

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Lancaster to me always looked like an Olympic athlete just ready to explode in a dynamic athletic performance. I can't think of anyone who seemed more athletic or or had more athletic charisma no matter what the role. Even in "Field of Dreams" late in his career one just knows he could have played MLB if he had wanted to when he was young.

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Many of you probably remember when cigarette ads were everywhere. Whitey Ford, Warren Spahn, Y.A. Tittle, etc. were very conspicuous in magazines, newspapers, game programs, and other pubs hawking cigarettes. Bobby Layne allegedly fired up a smoke on the sidelines after touchdowns in the 50s. I am sure he wasn't the only one. Nearly every pro jock smoked.


I agree that Lancaster is top notch as an athlete. His training as an acrobat served him well. Although it is not a "sport", there is no one more athletically skilled than a trapeze artist. His performance as Thorpe did indeed exploit his tremendous athleticism. Cary Grant had the same acrobatic training, but I can't recall him playing in a sports flick. What a shame! You can tell that he was an athlete just by how he walked.


Edited by: tommyphils31 on Jan 8, 2014 7:59 PM


Edited by: tommyphils31 on Jan 8, 2014 8:00 PM

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