George Best - Special Edition (DVD)

George Best - Special Edition (DVD)

Ref No: 5016641116173

Details: DVD

Type: DVDs

Price: £17.99

Depending on your point of view, George Best is either the carefree hedonist who played football for the love of it, and gleefully enjoyed the fringe benefits (booze 'n' birds) which came with the territory, or he is the sad, shambolic, wife-beating alcoholic who frittered away his God-given gifts. Both perspectives are given a full airing in Best Intentions, an old Ulster TV documentary which has been re-released on video to coincide with Best, the recent biopic starring John Lynch as George Best.

This isn't exactly a polished piece of film-making. Many of the interviews seem to have taken place in howling gales (you can¹t listen to Dennis Law without being distracted by the way his hair dances in the wind), and the archive footage is very clumsily edited. Nevertheless, all the key witnesses are grilled. No, Bobby Charlton insists, there was never really any rift between him and the boy wonder--they were just very different personalities. His old manager Matt Busby remembers him as good-natured, quiet lad who used to stay behind on the training pitch to help the youngsters. Busby's relationship with the Belfast prodigy was akin to that of an ailing father with his lovable, reckless teenage son. Best vexed and exasperated Sir Matt, but helped him win the European Cup. As Best says, it was probably a fair trade-off.

Everybody liked George, even his fiercest critics. His ex-wife Angie, his shaggy-haired old manager Bill McMurdo and former team-mates like Pat Jennings and Pat Crerand all trot out well-worn anecdotes about what a "smashing bloke" he is. George himself gives honest answers to questions on his drinking and playboy antics. If you're in any doubt why people make such a fuss of him, it only takes a few seconds of old footage of him prancing around opponents on the pitch to remind us that he really was the footballing genius the hype proclaims him to be. --Geoffrey Macnab

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