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Drama Movies

June 3 2018 Drama Movies Newsletter

In John McEnroe's latest book, "But Seriously", he recalls a conversation with Bjorn Borg. McEnroe had just been bumped from the world number one tennis ranking by Ivan Lendl but told Borg it wasn't that bad. The Swede replied, "No, John, number one is the only thing that matters. If you're number two, you might as well be number three or one hundred--you're nobody."

Borg's uncompromising attitude partly explains why he walked away from tennis at age 26, even though he was still ranked one of the sport's top three players. The beginning of the McEnroe/Borg rivalry is the subject of "Borg vs. McEnroe", which I review in this week's post on the Drama Movies site. I've long been a fan of pro tennis and vividly recall attending an exhibition match featuring Borg when I was a teen.

There are conflicting statements regarding McEnroe's participation, or lack thereof, in the film. McEnroe says he was never contacted by the filmmakers while director Janus Metz says he reached out to the tennis star, who never responded. McEnroe also stated that the 1980 Wimbledon final, the match "Borg vs McEnroe" highlights, was not a big deal to him at the time. However, in his book referenced above, McEnroe says while he was playing the fourth set tiebreak (which he won, saving five match points), he experienced "an out-of-body awareness that this was something special."

I had reservations regarding the casting of Shia LaBeouf as McEnroe but was pleasantly surprised. Sverrir Gudnason, who plays Borg, is even better. Gudnason is currently filming "The Girl in the Spider's Web" with Claire Foy. His role as Borg is undoubtedly a breakthrough for the multi-lingual actor and look for him to be featured in more English-language films.

Here's the latest article from the Drama Movies site at BellaOnline.com.

Borg vs McEnroe Film Review
Danish director Janus Metz has crafted a psychologically complex film that transcends tennis. Sverrir Gudnason and Shia LaBeouf play the fire and ice personalities of Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe.


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Angela K. Peterson, Drama Movies Editor

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