Look Good, Play Good
That’s How Football Works
Retire, Repair, Rebuild
The All Or Nothing documentary team return for another slice of NFL action this year, this time following the rollercoaster season of the Carolina Panthers during their dramatic 2018 campaign. With a lot of the team members aging and retirement looming over their shoulders, the Panthers make a push to win the Superbowl after their agonizingly close defeat back in 2004.
Unlike seasons past, All Or Nothing skips the NFL draft and gets right into the heart of the drama, beginning with a humorous introduction involving Beyonce’s music and a much more tonally sound style this year. From here, we meet each of the different players, including injury-stricken Greg Olsen, British native defender Efe Obada and quarterback Cam Newton. Much like the campaign itself, All Or Nothing adopts a more poignant tone late on, after Carolina Panther’s incredible 6-2 record saw them free-fall into five consecutive defeats.
In a way this actually makes the whole series more emotional and some of the musical interludes, including some beautiful acapella vocals late on, really tug at the heartstrings as these players realize their hopes and dreams have ended in disappointment. Their final crucial game against the Saints is an important one, and a match that’s split across two episodes. Given I went into this knowing nothing about their fate I found myself shouting at the TV for Cam to make a play and seeing this end so cruelly for the Panthers really encapsulates what sport is really all about.
After numerous different series across different sports, All Or Nothing have perfected their formula now for delivering an emotionally charged rollercoaster ride. The behind the scenes coverage is interesting, especially some of the drama surrounding Eric Dyer who infamously refused to partake in the National Anthem that sent ripples across the entire football spectrum. Hearing the fan reactions to his signing is a nice inclusion and certainly adds an extra dimension to proceedings as well.
With a charismatic group of players at its helm, the series utilizes each episode to its fullest, following a different player and seeing their tight-knit bond to the others in the locker room really helps you warm toward these individuals. The on-pitch action is well shot again, using the same slow-motion camera tricks and archival commentary from the NFL team to get you right into the heart of the action. The handy on-screen text prompts showing the score is a welcome inclusion too and these game-day shots are broken up with training sessions and team meetings.
If you’ve seen the previous All Or Nothing entries you know exactly what to expect. This sport documentary series takes you right into the heart of the Carolina Panthers and shows every up and drastic down the team faced during their 2018 campaign. It’s exciting, heartbreaking and oftentimes eye-opening stuff and a treat for any NFL fan. If you loved the previous seasons, you’re sure to like this one too and the added inclusion of more music and stylistic ticks helps this one in particular stand out next to others in the series. It’s not quite as good as the Arizona Cardinal season but it’s a very close runner-up.
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