23rd Annual Minneapolis - St. Paul International Film Festival

Murderball (Closing Night)
2004 - USA - 95min

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DIRECTOR: Henry Alex Rubin and Dana Adam Shapir

A work that challenges every notion of what mainstream society considers “handicapped,” Murderball demonstrates the strongest kind of human perseverance. Quadriplegic rugby is a venerated tradition in a specific American athletic community. Rubin and Shapiro have shaped a documentary that humanizes the seemingly oxymoronic concept of the quadriplegic athlete. But here, not only do these men overcome vigorous obstacles, they become world-class athletes. The sport of “murderball” combines the finesse of soccer with the relentless tactics of a demolition derby. Players careen around in customized wheelchairs while battling ancient grudges and fighting for their nationalist identity. The ultimate goal of Team USA is to win a gold medal at the Paralympics—but they must face one of its former stars, Joe Soares. When he is eventually rejected from the American team, he decides to coach Team Canada, and an intense rivalry is born. Rubin and Shapiro devoted over two years to creating this alternately hilarious, insightful, and inspiring study of an impressive bunch who discover how to sustain the human spirit against all odds. EC Murderball is the first film by Henry Alex Rubin and Dana Adam Shapiro.-EC


Saturday, April 16 9pm the Uptown Theatre