/Answers: Our Favorite Movie Teams

Justice League reshoots

Every week in /Answers, we attempt to answer a new pop culture-related question. With Justice League about to hit theaters, this week’s edition asks “What is your favorite movie team?” 

Hoai-Tran Bui: The Trio in Harry Potter

There’s a reason that Harry, Ron, and Hermione in the Harry Potter movies were nicknamed “The Golden Trio.” They were the gold standard for kid heroes forced to grow up too soon, facing down evil wizards, killer snakes, and convicted murderers at the end of every school year until the dangers actually became deadly. But through all that, they never lost the bond that made their unit so special.  And why would they? Each person played a pivotal part to the team, and whenever one member was missing, it always left a gaping hole. Harry the leader, Ron the heart, Hermione the brain. It feels destined, which it probably was: there’s a reason the three Deathly Hallows seem to correspond perfectly to the personalities that each of the teens.

Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, and Emma Watson are perfectly suited to their characters — I can’t write about the trio without bringing up the well-known behind-the-scenes story in which Prisoner of Azkaban director Alfonso Cuaron assigned the three young stars with an essay describing their characters. Radcliffe turned in one page, Watson wrote a 16-page treatise, and Grint forgot to do his.

And even as their team expanded or shrunk each year, adding honorary members like Neville, Ginny, and Luna, the trio remained a solid unit for much of the movies. The major conflicts throughout the films were when the three of them split up, either through arguments or by unavoidable circumstances, and these always became pivotal turning points in each of the films. When Hermione distances herself from the two boys in The Goblet of Fire, Harry becomes too dependant on the treacherous Mad Eye Moody. When Ron leaves the camp in Deathly Hallows, it leads Harry to one of the Horcruxes. And so on.

As much as they bicker, separate, and reunite, the three of them complement each other perfectly. One of the prime elements of Harry Potter is the concept of friends as found family, which Hermione and Ron provide Harry — especially when Harry ends up marrying Ron’s sister. The common saying is “Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home” but it’s Harry, Ron, and Hermione who will be the first at the door.

Ethan Anderton: Team USA in D2: The Mighty Ducks

Even though I may not be a loyal sports fan, there are plenty of sports movies that I love. No amount of growing up will make me abandon my nostalgic love for Disney’s The Mighty Ducks series. Furthermore, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more eclectic and fun team than Team USA from D2: The Mighty Ducks.

Take the stand-out parts of the roster from The Mighty Ducks and mix them up with a new batch of players from around the United States and you get old Ducks and new Ducks flying together under the banner of the USA. What more could you ask for? This is just a fantastic assembly of kids, and it’s a shame we don’t see sports movies like this coming from Disney anymore. The Mighty Ducks series is undeniably silly, but it also has the inspirational elements of some of the greatest sports movies ever made. A lot of that comes from the camaraderie between the Ducks.

Whether it’s Charlie Conway learning that he’s a much better coach than a player, Adam Banks coming to terms with the fact that he might not be a career hockey player, Greg Goldberg discovering that there are better goalies out there (because duh), or Fulton Reed having his stature challenged among the group by a new teammate, there’s such great (albeit simple) character development for nearly every character on the team. And you’ve gotta give it up for Emilio Estevez as Gordon Bombay (Minneapolis, Minnesota).

Plus, at the end of the day, this is America’s team. Quack, quack, quack, quack…

Jacob Hall: Danny Ocean’s Crew in Ocean’s Eleven

Throughout his career, director Steven Soderbergh has shown a frequent interest in people who are really good at their jobs. From the troubled surgeons of The Knick to the drug smugglers and law enforcement of Traffic to the strippers of Magic Mike, his obsession is professionalism. So leave it to him to create one of the coolest teams ever, because Ocean’s Eleven is a movie that’s all about an ensemble whose whole deal is pulling off awesome heists and looking awesome while they do it.

It helps that this crew features movie stars who radiate charisma like cartoon stink lines, but even the less famous names hold their own alongside George Clooney, Matt Damon, and Brad Pitt. Everyone has a part to play. Everyone has a single skill set that makes them invaluable to the team. Individually, they have niche abilities that work in specific situations. But together, they are unstoppable, a team of suave crooks who balance each other out in every possible way. This is an airtight crew, prepared for everything that can go wrong because they have a team member ready to tackle that wrong head-on.

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