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Varsity Blues (1999)

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A back-up quarterback is chosen to lead a Texas football team to victory after the star quarterback is injured.

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2 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Mox
...
Coach Kilmer
...
...
...
Tweeter
...
Joe Harbor
Tiffany C. Love ...
Collette Harbor
...
Julie Harbor
Eliel Swinton ...
...
Sam Moxon (as Thomas Duffy)
Jill Parker-Jones ...
Mo Moxon (as Jill Parker Jones)
Joe Pichler ...
Kyle Moxon
Mark Walters ...
Chet McNurty
...
Sheriff Bigelow
James N. Harrell ...
Murray (as James Harrell)
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Storyline

In small-town Texas, high school football is a religion. The head coach is deified, as long as the team is winning and 17-year-old schoolboys carry the hopes of an entire community onto the gridiron every Friday night. In his 35th year as head coach, Bud Kilmer (Jon Voight) is trying to lead his West Canaan Coyotes to their 23rd division title. When star quarterback Lance Harbor (Paul Walker) suffers an injury, the Coyotes are forced to regroup under the questionable leadership of John Moxon (James Van Der Beek), a second-string quarterback with a slightly irreverent approach to the game. "Varsity Blues" explores our obsession with sports and how teenage athletes respond to the extraordinary pressures places on them. Written by Steven Chea <schea@mail.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In a town where winning is everything, these guys have nothing to lose. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong language throughout, sexuality and nudity, and some substance abuse | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 January 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

American Boys  »

Box Office

Budget:

$16,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$17,515,723 (USA) (15 January 1999)

Gross:

$52,885,587 (USA) (16 April 1999)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Two principle cast members have died since the movies release. Paul Walker, November 30, 2013 and Ron Lester, June 17, 2016. See more »

Goofs

During the "William Tell" demonstration, Joe Harbor is seen from the side putting the "Lone Star" beer can on his head. From the side, it is facing straight toward the camera. In the next shot of him, from the front, the same "Lone Star" can has turned nearly 90 degrees counter clockwise about the vertical access to be facing directly forward where Lance knocks it off with the football. See more »

Quotes

Billy Bob: It's a strip club, man. I'm here to work!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Sports Jeopardy!: Episode #1.22 (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Hot For Teacher
Written by Edward Van Halen, Alex Van Halen, David Lee Roth and Michael Anthony
Performed by Van Halen
Courtesy of Warner Bros. Records Inc.
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Surprisingly good!
8 April 2001 | by (Jersey City, NJ) – See all my reviews

If someone checks out the trailer, one might think, "Another MTV-produced teen flick. I think I'll pass on that." Well, I went into the theater not thinking it was going to be bad, but I expected more of an amusing film that isn't really high on ingenuity. True, "Varsity Blues" has those standard teen elements like wild drinking parties, the school slut, etc. But it never overuses those elements. It's more of a compelling comedy-drama about football that delivers a fine message about sportsmanship. You have a pretty good idea how it's going to end up, but it's the way it's executed that makes it special. Jon Voight is absolutely terrific as the no-nonsense coach. He's the kind of character you want to stab in the chest every minute he's on screen, and Voight was a perfect choice. The film dabbles with elements of the sport that probably hit home to some high school football players. Voight's character has only one goal: winning. And he doesn't care how he gets to that goal. If he has to shoot drugs into every one of his players, he's going to arrive at that goal. And I'm sure there are coaches out there who have that selfish goal. Then James Van Der Beek comes along, and his character is not really concerned with winning or playing football in the first place. But he likes football, has fun with it and simply wants to play a good, honest game. If the team wins, good. If it doesn't, so what. He has a good locker room speech at the end of the movie.

"Varsity Blues" is funny, moving and wonderfully acted. It might appeal more to teens and young adults, more than the older ones, but I still suggest everyone check it out.


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