Pat Tillman never thought of himself as a hero. His choice to leave a multimillion-dollar football contract and join the military wasn't done for any reason other than he felt it was the ... See full summary »
The film centers on Joe Paterno, who after becoming the most successful coach in college football history, is embroiled in Penn State's Jerry Sandusky sexual abuse scandal, challenging his ... See full summary »
Filmmaker Amir Bar-Lev follows two Czech Holocaust survivors, Jan Weiner and Arnost Lustig, as they revisit Terezin, a labor camp where Arnost was interned for five years and Jan's mother was murdered.
The transformation of Patty Hearst from kidnapped heiress to terrorist is a saga of privilege, celebrity and violence that gripped the nation. Over forty years later, firsthand accounts ... See full summary »
In 2012, Crundwell was arrested as the largest municipal fraud perpetrator in the nation's history, embezzling upwards of $50 million as the comptroller and treasurer of Dixon, a city in ... See full summary »
Deep in the heart of Utah, commonly referred to as "Happy Valley," residents enjoy one of the lowest crime rates, highest literacy and language fluency - even the most jello consumption - ... See full summary »
The town of State College, the home of Penn State University, has long been known as Happy Valley, and its iconic figure for more than 40 years was Joe Paterno, the head coach of the school's storied football team. His program was lauded for not only its success on the field but also its students' achievements in the classroom. And Paterno took on mythic national stature as "Saint Joe." But then, in November 2011, everything came crashing down. Longtime Assistant Coach Jerry Sandusky was charged with 40 counts of child sex abuse, setting off a firestorm of accusations about who failed to protect the children of Happy Valley. Was Sandusky's abuse an "open secret" in the town? Did Coach Paterno and the Penn State administration value their football program more than the lives of Sandusky's victims? Filmed over the course of the year after Sandusky's arrest as key players in the scandal agreed to share their stories, Happy Valley deconstructs the story we think we know to uncover a much ...Written by
Sundance Film Festival
Interesting perspective on hero worship and denial
A well done documentary about how people react when the people and things they believe in turn out to be an illusion. Being from the 'liberal west coast', I've never understood how football could possibly reach the level of reverence it enjoys elsewhere. But here it is in all its glory... supported by hoards who seem more concerned with sportsball than anything else in their lives -- including justice for abused kids. Well okay, maybe they care for the kids as long as the football games don't stop and no one attacks their coach. For without football, we are nothing.
In all fairness, the documentary did include representatives from the non-reverent point of view. But it's witnessing the reactions of people who have so much invested in a sport that has achieved cult status, as well as the mechanics of group think, that make this an interesting doc. A good study in the sort of self-righteous mentality that starts wars. But who am I judge? I'm a west coast liberal. I'd rather do almost anything else than watch football.
2 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this