Review: 'Pond Hockey' a celebration of the rink rats

  • Article by: TOM HERBERG , Special to the Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 25, 2008 - 8:25 AM

★★★

Anyone who has ever laced up a pair of skates to glide over a frozen lake or a flooded backyard rink, with a pair of boots marking the goal, will appreciate Tommy Haines' documentary -- a celebration of the outdoor game and the rink rats who play it. Haines, who grew up in northern Minnesota, follows two teams on a quest for the golden shovel, the grand prize at the 2006 U.S. Pond Hockey Championship on Lake Calhoun in Minneapolis. But that's just half the story. Interspersed is interviews with some of the biggest names in hockey -- with an emphasis on Minnesota -- extolling the virtues of the outdoor game: no coaches, no structure, playing for hours at a time and learning to handle the puck like Wayne Gretzky. From Wendy Anderson to Krissy Wendell, the guests include Neal Broten, John Mayasich, Willard Ikola, Lou Nanne, Phil Housley and even the Great One himself talking about getting back to the game's roots. Director Tommy Haines will be present at the screening. (7 p.m. Fri., Oak Street, plus 7:30 p.m. Wed., St. Anthony. 82 min.)
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