- 2 hr 9 min
In the year 2018, the world has become a conglomerate of corporations that control everything, including entertainment. The most popular form of entertainment is Rollerball, a violent and high-speed sport played on a circular track with motorcycles and metal balls. Teams from different cities compete against each other in brutal matches that often result in serious injuries or death.
The story centers around Jonathan E., a superstar player for the Houston team. He is reluctant to be a celebrity and doesn't fully support the corporate control over society. His team owner, Bartholomew, is a ruthless businessman who is not afraid to manipulate his players to maintain control over the Rollerball league. The corporate executives, including the ruling Energy Corporation, are concerned that Jonathan's growing popularity may threaten their power, so they try to force him into retirement.
However, Jonathan refuses to give up and continues to play despite increasing danger and obstacles put in his way. He becomes embroiled in a power struggle with the corporate executives, who see him as a symbol of resistance to their authority. The game becomes more violent and deadly, and the stakes get higher as the game turns into a life and death situation.
As Jonathan's success threatens to unravel the corporate's plans, they decide to change the rules of the game to make it more lethal, hoping to finally defeat him. In the final match, Jonathan and his team face off against the Tokyo team in a brutal and bloody game. The violence and danger escalate until the outcome of the game becomes incidental to the message that is being sent to the world population.
Rollerball is a social commentary on the growing control of corporations over society and the dangers of extreme sports. James Caan delivers a solid performance as Jonathan, a man who refuses to be controlled by the system, and John Houseman is excellent as Bartholomew, the unscrupulous team owner. Maud Adams also shines as Jonathan's love interest, showing both vulnerability and strength.
The film boasts impressive sets and costumes that create a believable world in which corporations hold absolute power. The Rollerball scenes are fast-paced and exciting, with the team's motorbikes and armor adding an extra layer of excitement to the game. The deaths and injuries during the matches add to the tension and danger, raising the question of when the violence goes too far.
Overall, Rollerball is a classic science fiction movie that still holds relevance today. The film's message about individual freedom and corporate control resonates in today's society, making it a must-watch for fans of the genre.
Rollerball is a 1975 action movie with a runtime of 2 hours and 9 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.6 and a MetaScore of 56.