While phenomenally popular with audiences in the early-to-mid '90s, the Mighty Ducks franchise didn't receive much love from critics. This lack of critical acclaim is likely due to the fact that the Mighty Ducks franchise is a hot mess. Confusing things about The Mighty Ducks range from gaping plot holes to technical errors so obvious they're laughable. While you may have embraced the corniness of these films as an optimistic '90's kid, you'll question your childhood tastes when you re-watch the films as an adult.
There are so many things in the Mighty Ducks movies that make no sense, it's hard to know when to begin. The premise is absurd, the filmmakers clearly knew little about hockey, and some of the goofy childhood pranks dished out are intensely cruel. If you reconsider these childhood favorites, you'll find them among the many movie franchises with serious problems. Seriously, there are a lot of confusing things about the Mighty Ducks movies.
The Mighty Ducks is a peewee hockey team from Minneapolis that was largely terrible until the tail end of its last season. Even then, the team's only accomplishment was winning a division championship. Yet, in the second movie, a big chunk of Duck players are selected to represent the United States at The Goodwill Games, an international sports competition designed to draw the best little league players in the country.
In D2's defense, five new players were introduced to the team. Yet, with the exception of the new goalie, these players all had problems. One was a shameless showboater, one didn’t know how to stop, one only had previous experience figure skating, and one was a vicious thug. You would think, when searching the country for the most talented players possible, scouts could find a less flawed bunch.
In the beginning of the first Mighty Ducks film, Goldberg (Shaun Weiss) claims he won’t be the team’s goalie for long, as his parents are moving back to Philadelphia. This never happens, and it’s never discussed again. While moving plans can change, it’s odd the line was included in the film at all, given it had no relevance to the plot and was never followed up on. Then again, continuity errors are par for the course for the franchise. This includes technical errors.
In one scene in the first film, Adam Banks (Vincent Larusso) is seen cheering from the bench right before he's seen scoring a goal on the ice. More or less the same error is repeated in the second film, when Charlie Conway (Joshua Jackson) is seen playing on the ice and then immediately seen on the bench talking to a coach. In the third movie, there are multiple incidents in which characters speak while their mouths are clearly not moving. Go ADR!
Another fun Charlie Conway fact - he's credited as "Charlie Conroy" at the end of the film. Seriously.
The main competition for the Ducks in the Goodwill Games during the second film is Iceland. Despite having "ice" in the name, Iceland isn’t known for its hockey tradition. The sport is vastly popular in Canada, Russia, Switzerland, Sweden, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic. In most NHL games, you're bound to see a smattering of players from these countries on the ice.
It seems a little unbelievable that Team USA would be going head to head with Team Iceland instead of Team Russia or Team Canada in an international competition of any merit.
The catalyst of The Mighty Ducks, and the franchise spun from it, is alcoholic Gordon Bombay (Emilio Estevez) getting a DUI and being forced to coach little league hockey as punishment. What self-respecting judge would think this is a good idea? The legal ruling was essentially, "Hey! You're a big drunk. Why don't you hang out with kids?"
While the film makes it clear Bombay’s legal connections helped him evade serious punishment, it’s dubious coaching little league would be the slap-on-the-wrist sentence of choice for the judge. Imagine backlash from parents who find out their children are coached by an alcoholic with no experience with kids and a history of reckless driving. If the judge wanted to let Bombay off easy, surely he could have picked a less controversial form of community service.