The true story of a newly appointed African-American coach and his high school team on their first season as a racially integrated unit.The true story of a newly appointed African-American coach and his high school team on their first season as a racially integrated unit.The true story of a newly appointed African-American coach and his high school team on their first season as a racially integrated unit.
As is normally the case with films of this ilk, it quickly comes to pass that certain artistic licence has been taken with the truth. In reality the issues of race, integration and the near powder-keg atmosphere portrayed in the picture, were long past their worst in Virginia 1971. However, that should in no way detract from the thematics and truthful aspects of this Disney production. As is told in the film, the Titans did have what became known as the perfect season, whilst the bond formed between the black and white members most definitely existed. All told, the film soars high as an inspirational piece, not only for the mixed race community coming together plot's essential being, but in the crucial tale of one Gerry Bertier.
That this film urged me to seek out the story of Bertier is a testament to the power of film, regardless of any sort of sentimental prodding from the film makers. It's hoped that this film also prompts newcomers to research further the topics within the story.
The cast list is impressive, Denzel Washington and Will Patton find instant chemistry as the head coaches thrust together by outside influences, with both guys beautifully doing credit to the real life friendship that would be born from the situation. Ryan Hurst, Wood Harris, Ethan Suplee, Donald Faison, Kip Pardue, Craig Kirkwood and a pre-fame Ryan Gosling fill out the integrated football team. With two important family roles nicely portrayed by Hayden Panettiere and Nicole Ari Parker. The soundtrack is nicely put together, with the core offering of Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell's thumping rendition of "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" particularly potent and uplifting.
Though not primarily offering up anything new in the pantheon of race and sport related movies, Remember The Titans does have so much good going for it. It's hard to be picky, even churlish about the little faults (are these actors really the age of high schoolers for example?). So hopefully come the end, after the credits roll, you will be suitably inspired, and perhaps a touch more better off for having spent time with this particular football team. 8.5/10
- Jul 31, 2009