Jim White moves his family after losing his last job as a football coach. He sees that some of the students are worth starting a cross-country team and turns seven students with no hope into one of the best cross-country teams.
A struggling coach and teacher who has had to move around for different incidents in his career finally comes to one of the poorest cities in America: McFarland, California. There he discovers buried potential in several high school boys and slowly turns them into championship runners and brings them closer than even he could ever imagine.
On Canadian TV the movie title is shown as simply "McFarland", dropping the "USA". See more »
When Carlos is at the top of the pile of almond hulls, he said that someone picked them. Almonds are not picked. A machine shakes the tree and the almonds fall into the machine or are swept up later. See more »
In making this movie Kevin Costner stuck to the formula, the one that most feel good sports movies use, and made it work beautifully. There are no unexpected fancy twists in this one. The acting is straight up and solid. The ethnic background of the movie adds to the movie in good way. I enjoy a few of the scenes that involve the interactions between the coach or his family and the locals. They demonstrate how cultural interaction and familiarity can eliminate fear and breakdown the walls that divide us. Don't get me wrong, the movie is not trying to give you a social/cultural lecture, this stuff comes naturally mixed with the main story line.
If you like the genre, you'll enjoy this movie.
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