‘Perfect Lineup’ Drafts a Peculiar Team

GameStop, Inc.

Perfect Lineup is the fantasy team that looks good in theory but doesn’t match its projections.

Daily Fantasy Sports is the new it way to “gamble” on sports. For every major sport and game, players choose lineups and hope their choices bring their team the win. It is the epitome of sports machismo. I personally love fantasy football and respect Daily Fantasy Sports as a game and pseudo-sport. Being the amazing waiver warrior I am, the appeal of Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) is very appealing. Perfect Lineup documents the journey and rise of DFS through owners and creators of DFS sites/companies, as well as some high achieving players of the game.

The information in the documentary was very well presented from each of their sources, whether it be players of the game or business owners of the sites that run the sport. It is a remarkable tale of what seems like an overnight phenomenon. DFS seems to only be growing as traditional fantasy sports sites are beginning to induct DFS into their systems. All of the sources interviewed were very knowledgeable and credible. The film used a nice array of footage that captured a lot of the emotions and story of DFS and its culture. Overall, it is an interesting story and one that will only be more and more covered and looked into as DFS continues to grow. Those commercials pop up every on television and online.

Perfect Line Up tells the story of DFS’ rising, avid participation in numerous forms, and projected growth. However, the film seems to only share one side of the story. Everything about the film is extremely positive and pro-DFS. It feels like one giant commercial explaining why people should get into DFS. DFS is presented as a viable source of income according to the film. The perfect job for stay at home fathers so they can be with their kids or the perfect excuse to neglect your spouse because now sports enthusiasm is work. I understand my views are biased, but I am simply trying to shed light on the other side of DFS. There is no conflict in the narrative, simply the financial opportunity and validity of DFS as a source of income.

There are some slight negatives in the testimonies, but most of it is hypothetical and anything shown was only a minimal loss. The biggest negative someone said is they went into some debt so they could double down, and they ended up winning. DFS was also compared to stock trading and enforced by an actual stock broker or trader (to be honest I get any stock related job title confused). While I can see the comparisons, and agree with most of them, they gloss over the intricacies of how complex and risky it is in order to give a sound byte of what it takes to be successful in both fields.

The narrative of the movie is also somewhat vague. The entire film is composed of testimonial interviews with no tangible story process. I feel they could have benefitted from a narrator or even host to guide the narrative through. Lastly, everyone interviewed was caucasian minus the Yahoo representative. Is the sport really dominated by Caucasians, or could they really not find a minority who plays the sport? Perfect Lineup really seems to focus on a very biased side of the story.

Perfect Lineup Verdict

Perfect Lineup is a pretty well put together documentary that highlights the fun and fantastic lifestyle of Daily Fantasy Sports. Minus the mediocre narrative compilation, it does a great job of highlighting and glamorize the lifestyle, careers, and culture of DFS. The only real critique I can make based on the film is that it feels very promotional for DFS. It doesn’t seem to be sharing information or a story as much as it seems to be attracting people to join in. This might be my inner anti-establishment rebel, but the film just seems to be a bought and paid for commercial. It has the feel big tobacco sponsoring anti-smoking campaigns. My critiques are mostly about what is not being said, and my personal philosophy of documentaries. As a documentary medium, it is done rather well and enjoyable to watch. However, in terms of capturing the issue, it is one-sided and should not be used as a definitive source. Keep in mind the film is solely on DFS and the first to make their living playing it, and that it does very well.

Perfect Lineup was featured at Newport Film Festival, check out their site to see where you can catch next

Perfect Lineup
  • Review Score

The Verdict

Perfect Lineup captures and explores the lifestyle and thriving business of Daily Fantasy Sports. It is a rather well put together documentary, however it feels extremely biased to the point of promtion. It also greatly lacks diversity.

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