In the sumer of 1976, 30-year old Vince Papale is having a tough run of luck. He's been working as a supply teacher for two days a week but has just found out that his job has been eliminated because of budget cuts. His wife gives up on him saying he'll never amount to anything and asks for a divorce. He works as a bartender and plays football with his friends. When the the new coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, Dick Vermeil, announces that he will hold open tryouts for the team, Vince reluctantly decides to give a try. Based on a true story. Written by
Really enjoyed this film. Went with my almost 13 year old son who is just starting his first participation in organized football in school and I think the film really inspired him.
No the film does not focus on the Eagles professional sports organization. So if you're looking for a film that does that, you're probably going to be disappointed.
The film focuses on our hero and to a large degree his neighborhood friends and what it was like for a 30 year old bartender who only played organized football in high school and how he showed up one Saturday at an unprecedented open try out for a professional football team and how he was selected....not selected to join the team automatically.
No, he was only selected for a spot to possibly be on the team. It took a few weeks of being with the team and surviving 'cuts' until he was actually part of the team.
The fact that he did make it, against all the odds, is certainly your classic fairy tale come true.
Disney manages to show rough guys from a rough part of Philadelpia and rough professional football players realistically without ever having to utter one profanity on the screen or use gratuitous violence or vulgarity to do it. That's an accomplishment Disney should be proud of.
Honestly, as a movie buff, it's been a long time since I've gone to the movies where I was able to stay engaged throughout the running time of the movie.
The movie isn't pretentious nor does it take the easy way out in telling its story of rough blue collar characters-by employing vulgarity, overt sexuality or excessive violence.
It relies on tried and true methods like a good storyline, taking the time to establish a good foundation in the beginning of the movie, letting the audience get to know the characters involved and then when the bigger more dramatic moments come it doesn't need to rely on over the top special affects to get the audience involved.
That being said, the actual professional football game scenes are well done with just enough special affects to give the audience the feel that these actors really were on that playing field playing the game.
I really can't say enough about this movie. When all the hype fades away on other overly marketed & bigger budgeted movies, it will be a movie like this one, that you'll reach for over and over again in your personal movie library.
And while we're at it, hats off to Mark Whalberg for a sensitive, well acted portrayal.
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