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Saturday, May 25, 2013

Undefeated (2012) - review

When it comes down to it, this sounds like just another sports movie. You know the formula, an underdog team that fights to get to the top.  The team is comprised of all the standard characters - Chaviz, the troubled superstar; O.C. Brown, the gentle giant with the skills, but not the grades play college ball; Montrail 'Money' Brown the smart one looking for his ticket to a brighter future and of course, the surly coach with a heart of gold, Coach Bill Courtney.  The difference is, their story is real, the people are real - this is a documentary (please, don't stop reading.)

Undefeated tells their stories, both on and off the field, as well as the story of the Manassas Tigers, a team known for having one of the worst high school football programs in the state of Tennessee.  To this point the team's infamous for being so bad that they have never won a single playoff game. After a several promising players joined the team several years back, Coach Bill thought he was going to see a tremendous turn around - in reality the results were dismal.  Now as those same promising players enter their senior year, he knows it is their last chance to prove themselves or have little to show for their efforts.

That is where the film picks up, senior year - a few weeks before the start of the season with a squad of guys looking to change the face of Manassas Tigers football.   We follow them week after week, through wins, loses, personal successes, altercations and everything else that makes up a football season.  It is an easy film to watch and enjoy, football fan or not.  For fans of the sport, the will they or won't they of each game should be enough to carry you through the film.  It will be the engaging stories of the individual players and their coach that will draw you in you even without the typical manipulative Hollywood polish.  By the time the film was over I was thinking how great it would be if everybody had a Coach Bill in their lives.

 8.0 out of 10

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