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I saw this film on November 21st, 2006 in Indianapolis. I am one of the
judges for the Heartland Film Festival's Truly Moving Picture Award. A
Truly Moving Picture "
explores the human journey by artistically
expressing hope and respect for the positive values of life." Heartland
gave that award to this film.
This film is based on a true and tragic story. On November 14th, 1970,
the Marshall University football team, football coaches, athletic
staff, key alumni, and friends were flying home to Huntington, West
Virginia after an away game against East Carolina. Their plane crashed
killing all seventy five (75) aboard.
How do a University and a small town of 50,000 people respond to a
massive tragedy that affected so many students and town residents? This
movie is about their struggle to come to grips with that tragedy.
Without bitter rancor and with humility, some felt the University
should start up a new football team and persevere through a long
rebuilding process to honor the dead. Others, again without rancor and
with humility, believed that starting up a football team would be too
painful a reminder of the tragedy.
It was decided to start a new football team immediately and play the
next season in 1971. This movie is primarily about the difficulties of
the development of the team.
Matthew McConaughey plays the new Head Coach brilliantly and
believably. He is a combination of country bumpkin enthusiastic
huckster and a wise man. And he does it simply because he believes
"Maybe I can help." He displays courage and perseverance and makes
sacrifices with a career move that could throw him out of his beloved
profession, head football coaching, forever.
The town and University have to quickly break the Vince Lombardi-like
notion that you play the game of football for one reason only to win.
They learn how you play the game matters, and even simply showing up is
a kind of victory too.
This is a compelling story well told and very moving.
FYI There is a Truly Moving Pictures web site where there is a
listing of past Truly Moving Picture Award winners that are now either
at the theater or available on video.
Tags for We Are Marshall Full Movie
, David Strathairn
, Matthew Fox
, Matthew McConaughey
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