Flicks With Kicks: Six films with iconic sneaker cameos


Everybody loves settling in to zone out with a movie, and with all of the streaming options available to us in 2020, the list of choices is endless. Where do you even start?!

Since this is the Finish Line blog, we’ve put together a list of movies featuring iconic sneaker moments for you sneakerheads to wile away those couch days.

Title: He Got Game (1998)

Stream on: Hulu, Amazon Prime ($)

Sneakers: Air Jordan 13

You can’t make a list of sneakers in pop culture cameos without this one. Denzel Washington, portraying new parolee Jake Shuttlesworth, wants to trade his work boots in for something fresher. And what was hotter in ‘98 than Tinker’s Air Jordan XIII?

Title: Do The Right Thing (1989)

Stream on: iTunes, Amazon Prime ($)

Sneakers: Air Jordan 4

The only movie featured on this list that’s also on the National Film Registry, Do The Right Thing is director Spike Lee at his finest. Set in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, one memorable scene depicts Buggin’ Out incensed as a new resident of the neighborhood steps on his fresh Jordan 4s.

Title: Blue Chips (1994)

Stream on: Amazon Prime ($)

Sneakers: Reebok Shaq Attack

In 1994 you’d be hard pressed to find a bigger basketball star than Shaquille O’Neal. The Orlando Magic young gun was getting hotter by the minute, and he was even larger than life on the silver screen. Shaq plays Neon Boudeaux, whom coach Nick Nolte recruits to play for his Western University Dolphins. The movie cover features Shaq throwing down a thunderous dunk — no surprises there — in a pair of his signature Reebok Shaq Attacks. To commemorate the movie’s 26th anniversary, Nike released a run of Air Penny 5s in Dolphins colors.

Title: Space Jam (1996) 

Stream on: Netflix, Amazon Prime ($)

Sneakers: Air Jordan 9, Air Jordan 11, Air Jordan 2

This might be the most lucrative shoe cameo of all time. His Airness himself, Michael Jordan, starred alongside some of his superstar NBA peers as well as the world’s most recognizable cartoon animals to defeat a basketball team from outer space (Moron Mountain, specifically.) MJ shows up at his first practice in the ninth edition of his signature shoe, but — spoiler alert — beats the Monstars rocking Jordan 11s, which disappear off shelves even faster when they’re retroed than toilet paper seems to lately.

Bonus appearance: Bill Murray checks into the game late wearing Air Jordan 2s. 

Title: Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse (2018)

Stream on: Netflix, Amazon Prime ($)

Sneakers: Air Jordan 1 Retro

Miles Morales, just a kid from Brooklyn in the first animated film of the Marvel superhero franchise, takes up the gauntlet after Spider-Man is killed by Kingpin. Miles has big shoes to fill — not least of which are the Jordan Retro 1s he dons in the movie. In a cool tie-in, Jordan Brand dropped the Spiderman Origin Story 1s shortly before Christmas in 2018.

Title: Back To The Future Part II (1989)

Stream on: Netflix, Amazon Prime ($)

Sneakers: Nike Air Mag

I conducted a survey and there’s not one single kid* who grew up in the 90s who didn’t want a pair of self-lacing, auto-sizing Nike Mags like Marty McFly had in River Valley in the futuristic year of 2015. Iconic designer Tinker Hatfield created the shoe for the movie, and then designed it in real life (albeit without power laces). Fifteen hundred pairs were released in 2011 to raise funds for Parkinson’s disease research. The 2015 re-release consisted of 89 pairs featuring the app-controlled auto-lacing technology now found in Nike’s futuristic Adapt basketball range.

Check out Part 2 of Flicks With Kicks with six more movies with iconic sneaker moments!