The Great Match, or La Gran Final as it is known in Spain where it was produced, is a 2006 movie about three groups of people scattered around the globe who are all trying to achieve the same difficult project: getting TV reception of the classic 2002 World Cup Final between Germany and Brazil. One is in Brazil, one in Niger and one in Mongolia.
Getting the World Cup Final on the television doesn’t sound so tough to Americans, but these people live in remote areas of the world where technology is decades behind the US. Gerardo Olivares wrote and directed the film, which is really less about soccer than it is about the common threads that unite the global community.
Olivares’ cinematography is brilliant. He honed his craft making documentaries for National Geographic, so it’s fair to say the best thing about The Great Match is the stunning camerawork. The film itself is surprisingly humorous, as many of the characters approach their rural existence with good natured warmth.
Overall, I would recommend The Great Match to lovers of cultural documentaries, but if you are looking for a film featuring a ton of soccer, this is not for you. This movie isn’t about the game, it’s about how the game unites us all around the globe. It’s a very good film, and if you have an opportunity to see it, I recommend you take it.