Critically acclaimed documentary about the 1968 football game played by two undefeated teams from Harvard and Yale.Critically acclaimed documentary about the 1968 football game played by two undefeated teams from Harvard and Yale.Critically acclaimed documentary about the 1968 football game played by two undefeated teams from Harvard and Yale.
Not the Knute Rockne Story
George Gipp and fiery halftime speeches do not figure in this film. Rather, what is fascinating about it is to hear a bunch of 60-somethings, Ivy League football players whose athletic careers mostly concluded on a Saturday afternoon in 1968, talk intelligently about what an exciting game with a story-book ending meant to them in the context of those times. The interviews are excellent, with an overlay of retrospection and introspection totally missing from post-game interviews on, say, Fox Sports today. The game footage that we see interspersed between those interviews -- undefeated Yale, ranked an unheard-of sixteenth in the country, played its traditional rival Harvard, also undefeated, in the final game of the season -- is interesting enough but not likely to hold the attention of non-sports fans. Of course, 1968 was a watershed year in a tumultuous decade, before "women were invented," as a Yale player puts it, so the game could not be played without accounting in some way for Viet Nam, student protests, ROTC on campus, political assassinations, class differences, sex, the fleeting nature of fame, and the necessity and unexpected results of growing up. Oddly enough, the words of Tommy Lee Jones, who played guard for the Harvard team and roomed with Al Gore, are among the least insightful. Producer, director, interviewer, and cinematographer Kevin Rafferty is a cousin of George W. Bush, but you would not know it from his film. There is something of the spirit of "The Fog of War" in this documentary which I greatly enjoyed. Full disclosure: I graduated from Harvard College in 1966, will never wax nostalgic about my years there, and remember Harvard football as a laughable excuse to enjoy autumn sunshine in New England.
- Oct 24, 2009
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By what name was Harvard Beats Yale 29-29 (2008) officially released in Canada in English?Answer