Best Movies by Farr
Brian's Song Poster
Released Runtime Category
1971 73 Drama, Sports Movies
Director Language
Buzz Kulik English
James Caan, Billy Dee Williams, Shelley Fabares, Jack Warden

Brian's Song

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What's it About

When gifted black running back Gale Sayers (Billy Dee Williams) joins the Chicago Bears in 1965, he finds himself competing against a less talented but equally determined white player named Brian Piccolo (James Caan). Soon, this potential rivalry turns into a close bond, as Piccolo helps Sayers weather an injury, and Sayers later returns the favor when Brian is stricken with cancer.

Why we love it

Based on Gale Sayers's autobiography, this indelible made-for-TV movie tells the true story of a friendship born through football that ends tragically. Coming off his success in "The Godfather," Caan is terrific as the spirited Piccolo, whose gutsy yet graceful attitude inspires Sayers (played with quiet, rookie confidence by Williams) to achieve his full potential. The craggy, always reliable Jack Warden co-stars as Bears Coach George Halas, and Shelly Fabares (from TV's "Donna Reed Show") is also solid as Brian's steadfast wife, Joy. This poignant, inspirational tale unfolds over just 75 minutes, but keep the Kleenex handy, as few remain unmoved by the end.

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BEST MOVIES BY FARR is your personal guide to great movies to rent, stream, or buy; to watch at home or on-the-go. Led by film advocate John Farr, the Best Movies by Farr team works as a "quality filter" for the discerning moviegoer. Every day, we bring you the best of the best, the fantastic familiar films and hidden gems, to answer that age-old question: "What should we watch tonight?"