Offside is a 2019 sports feature documentary by Miguel Gaudencio shot entirely in black & white and runs for a very lengthy 100 minutes. It follows the Olimpia, a small Polish female football/soccer team, during the winter pre-season months.
We start by learning that pre-season is a critical time as the film opens with a quote about the importance of good pre-season training and habits being the foundation of a successful winning team. It is followed by scenes of the team training at night. It looks extremely cold, but the girls are bravely doing various exercises while the coach is “being a typical coach”: giving instructions, or some “motivational yelling,” and calling teammates on not pushing their limits enough, princesses or such nicknames. Even though we see the whole team working hard on the fields, bonding in locker rooms, learning about ways to improve their individual performances or other things people familiar with football/soccer could appreciate, the main or only voice of the film is that of Olimpia’s coach, Natalia.
“…the importance of good pre-season training and habits being the foundation of a successful winning team.”
The black and white might be a welcomed touch for the ones that will view it as a stylistic experiment, but it seems quite pointless considering it is a very contemporary documentary, and the genre implies that is not meant to be “arty” or nothing grandiose happens as it wants to be a mundane affair about a small-town team. But the director or production probably had good reasons to opt for this “bold” stance for a sports documentary.