I saw Murderball, a documentary about Olympic Quad Rugby, on Sunday with the film club. Now I knew nothing about Olympic Quad Rugby (a.k.a. Murderball; a.k.a. Paralympic Quadriplegic Rugby) going into the film, but it seems to me that after this film this sport will be much more widely known. The sport is intense, and the players literally beat the shit out of each other and their chairs. It’s like rugby, but instead of using shoulders and elbows to take out the carrier, you use a big metal chair as fast as you can get it going. I think we are trained by culture to think of quadriplegic people as helpless, but this film will literally rewrite your definition of even what the word ‘quadriplegic’ means.
The movie focuses mostly on two people, Mark Zupan, a player for the USA Paralympic Rugby team and Joe Soares, a former player for Team USA who was dropped from the team and now coaches Team Canada. The bitter rivalry between the two teams is perfectly captured, both with the “action” scenes as well as some scenes where Soares is referred to as a traitor. The soundtrack is pretty good too, with several of the game action scenes backed by Ministry which I still have a soft spot for (by “soft spot” I actually mean “whips me into a frenzy”). Anyway, enough babbling, go see this movie.