Writer: Mike Jeffries, Adrian Butchart, Terry Loane (Screenplay) Mike Jefferies, Adrian Buchart (Story)
Starring: Kuno Becker, Stephen Dillane, Leonor Varela, Elizabeth Pena, Carmelo Gomez, Miriam Colon, Rutger Hauer, Alessandro Nivola, Anna Friel
Plot: When Newcastle United soccer star Santiago Munez is offered a spot with Real Madrid, he accepts, but the move – accompanied by big money and fame – tests his ties and loyalties to family, friends and business acquaintances.
Tagline – The Journey Continues…
Runtime: 1 Hour 55 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Disappointing Sequel
Story: Goal II: Living the Dream starts with Gavin Harris (Nivola) now playing for Real Madrid, noting having a good spell at the time. Santiago as continues to thrive in Newcastle planning to marry Roz (Friel), until Real Madrid come knocking for him.
Santiago signs for Real Madrid where he must learn to cope with added fame and fortune, a long-distance relationship with Roz and being in the headlines every night, let along a personal twist to his past.
Thoughts on Goal II: Living the Dream
Characters – Santiago has now been signed by the biggest club in the world, Real Madrid, the spotlight is now firmly on him, he has too much money for a young footballer, in another new country, he starts to become reckless, against the character Roz fell for, as well as making bad life decisions, much like what Gavin was doing. He must deal with learning about what happened to long lost family members in the most important stage of his career. He has taken a complete turn from the supportable young man trying to follow his dream in this film. Gavin Harris has made the move before Santiago, he has been struggling to make an impact in the new team, he has tried to turn his life around, he is in competition with Santiago for a place in the team. Roz is planning the wedding between the two, she struggles with the distance apart knowing it would difficult, she doesn’t enjoy the spotlight either. Rosa is the long-lost mother of Santiago, she can’t believe he has come to her town which has seen her raise a new family one with another gifted young footballer.
Performances – Kuno Becker does struggle with the character switch he goes through, he doesn’t know how to truly make us feel sympathetic to his characters decisions. Alessandro Nivola does get us plenty of laughs through the film. Anna Friel doesn’t get enough time to make impact like she did in the first film, while Elizabeth Pena does bring another dimension to the film.
Story – The story follows Santiago in the next stage of his career, here he will play for the biggest club in the world and must learn to deal with new problems including fame and fortune, one that all new footballers will need to face at a younger age. This story does feel strange because we don’t see the time frame between the two movies, we don’t know how successful Santiago became at Newcastle, but it can only be a couple of seasons. The switch in character of the grounded Santiago is strange because he never wanted to cave the pressure and this time, he is doing everything recklessly. Add in the fact this is about reaching a cup final it just feels to cinematic to be a believable story, unlike the first film. the romantic side of the story does feel like it is just tagged on making little impact on the main story, it is the story of the long-lost mother and the truth about what happened that does make the biggest impact on the story.
Sports – The football success chasing is strong, but does feel too cinematic with the goals mostly being unrealistic.
Settings – The film takes us to Spain and the elite living class of a footballer, we see how they can walk in anywhere to be known, but it does give weather to feel like home.
Final Thoughts – This is a disappointing sequel, mostly because it changes the character, we got to know too much from the first film.
Overall: Sequel that doesn’t live up to the original.