Counting down the 7 best training montages in film
In partnership with NiQuitin.
We're gonna need a montage!
The training montage is cinema in its purest, most primal form. You know it's done right when the visuals and music weave together harmoniously. Giving you goosebumps, causing the hair on the back of your neck to stand up, making you jump from the couch and punch the air.
But what really elevates a training sequence is having a character at its centre that you care about and stakes that are high enough to spur them into action.
It should make you want to pull on your own runners or boxing gloves and expend some energy. Speaking of which, as part of our Quit to Fit challenge, we want you and your team to get your smartphones out and make your own training montage video. Our five teams will be uploading their montages on Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #QuitToFit. We also want you to get involved. We want you to film your best training montages and share them with us using the hashtag!
If you need some inspiration, check out the list below before you take to pounding the pavement and punching the bag.
7. The Incredibles
Clip Via: Maciej Krowiński
Let’s start with a nice uplifting one. This offering from Pixar sees Bob Parr a.k.a. Mr Incredible getting back into the superhero groove after years away from the spotlight. Accompanied by Michael Giacchino's big brass score, we see him lose weight, reconnect with his family... and toss around a truck.
6.The Karate Kid
Clip Via: TheChefDeadManInc
Alright, we're cheating a bit with this one because it's a tournament rather than training. But when you think about it, this is Daniel LaRusso's first time fighting in a competition and it's all leading up to a confrontation with his tormenter Johnny Lawrence, so in a way, it's kind of training for the final bout. So there... also, that song!
5. Team America
Clip Via: zxxz996
In case you were unclear about the exact mechanics and purpose of a montage, well this absolute banger should spell it out for you. The most self-aware choice on our list is a pastiche of the classic eighties movies we know and love.
Clip Via: Floss Cov
Creed had a tough job following in the footsteps of the best sporting franchise of all time. Thanks to director Ryan Coogler and star Michael B. Jordan, the spin-off not only lives up to Rocky, it takes its place as one of the best in the series. Carried along by a pounding theme tune, Adonis Creed runs up hospital steps and outruns quadbikes. What makes this montage all the more powerful is seeing Rocky go through his own struggles. The finished product is one of the most emotionally involving moments in the series.
Clip Via: Max Tyburski
Let’s take a step away from all the sports and superheroism and look at the equally gruelling discipline of dancing. It’s a dark time when we enter into the world of Footloose. Dancing and rock music have been banned from this small town when newcomer Kevin Bacon arrives. He sets about shaking up the status quo, starting with going all Mr Miyagi on Chris Penn and teaching the farm boy to dance in this glorious montage.
Clip Via: Sposchy
If this doesn’t get your blood pumping then you might be missing a blood pump, also known as a heart!
We've got Li Shang training his troops, including the eponymous hero so they can “defeat the Huns”. This montage's biggest weapon is the song Make a Man Out of You, one of the best in Disney’s back catalogue. Take a gander at Jackie Chan’s rendition in Chinese for the craic while you’re at it.
1. Rocky IV
Clip Via: Abdul Anwar
And here we are, the granddaddy of them all. In all honesty, this list could have been comprised solely of Rocky montages. We were doing well just keeping it down to two.
Rocky IV pairs back dialogue and plot, leaving us with the story of one man out to avenge his rival-turned-friend's death at the hands of a Russian boxer who is being artificially enhanced in a state-sponsored program (sound familiar?). We've also got a shit tonne of montages. There are literally five montages in this film. This particular sequence takes place just before the final fight. Rocky trains the old fashioned way, by chopping wood and lifting a cart full of his family.
At the risk of veering into hyperbole, Rocky IV has the best soundtrack of any film ever and Hearts on Fire by John Cafferty is the crown jewel of the bunch.
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In partnership with NiQuitin.