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We Are Marshall (2006)

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When a plane crash claims the lives of members of the Marshall University football team and some of its fans, the team's new coach and his surviving players try to keep the football program alive.

Director:

McG

Writers:

Jamie Linden (screenplay), Cory Helms (story) | 1 more credit »
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2,459 ( 3,780)
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Matthew McConaughey ... Jack Lengyel
Matthew Fox ... Red Dawson
Anthony Mackie ... Nate Ruffin
David Strathairn ... President Dedmon
Ian McShane ... Paul Griffen
Kate Mara ... Annie Cantrell
January Jones ... Carole Dawson
Kimberly Williams-Paisley ... Sandy Lengyel
Arlen Escarpeta ... Reggie Oliver
Brian Geraghty ... Tom Bogdan
Tommy Cresswell ... Gene Morehouse
Christian Kanupke Christian Kanupke ... Young Keith Morehouse
Nina Jones ... Mrs. Morehouse
Kevin Atkins Kevin Atkins ... George Olson
Mark Patton Mark Patton ... Bill James
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Storyline

In November, 1970, virtually the entire football team and coaches of Marshall University (Huntington, W.V.) die in a plane crash. That spring, led by Nate Ruffin, a player who was ill and missed the fatal flight, students rally to convince the board of governors to play the 1971 season. The college president, Don Dedman, must find a coach, who then must find players. They petition the NCAA to allow freshmen to play, and coach Jack Lengyel motivates and leads young players at the same time that he reexamines the Lombardi creed that winning is the only thing. The father and the fiancée of a player who died find strength to move on. Can Marshall win even one game in 1971? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

When Jack Lengyel's chances of victory were slim and none...he went with the slim. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for emotional thematic material, a crash scene, and mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 December 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Untitled Marshall University Football Project See more »

Filming Locations:

Atlanta, Georgia, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$65,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,582,508, 24 December 2006

Gross USA:

$43,545,364
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

From the 1971 team, no player and only Asst Coach Mickey Jackson have been elected to the Marshall Athletic Hall of Fame. See more »

Goofs

At halftime of the Xavier vs. Marshall game, the radio announcer refers to the Xavier Pirates. They're actually the Xavier Musketeers. See more »

Quotes

Jack Lengyel: Don, are you married?
President Dedmon: Yes sir, 25 years this year.
Jack Lengyel: Now, I am going to bet... that you didn't propose over the phone.
President Dedmon: Ummm, no.
Jack Lengyel: And I'm pretty sure, that she didn't accept with a letter.
President Dedmon: Uhhhh.
Jack Lengyel: Don?
President Dedmon: Jack?
Jack Lengyel: Don?
President Dedmon: Jack?
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no opening credits, not even a title. See more »

Connections

Referenced in How I Met Your Mother: Lucky Penny (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

The Love You Save
Written by Berry Gordy, Fonce Mizell (as Alphonso Mizell), Freddie Perren and Deke Richards
Performed by Jackson 5
Courtesy of Motown Records
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Truly Moving Picture
24 November 2006 | by tolliniSee all my reviews

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.


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