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Remember the Titans is a Drama/Sports film that does more than entertain us in a game of football. It portrays real-life events and our countries history through a riveting and touching movie experience. This film has all the criteria for a sports movie worth the watch. We are given the inspiring story of teamwork, the amity between the teammates, leadership, realism, and the emotional experience that makes this movie so relatable. The Titans are already expected to fail before stepping foot on the field. They are the first integrated football team after times of segregation. The community is still struggling to accept that they must work together and so are the players. Throughout the movie, we are shown how they learn to overcome their racial differences, unite, and become a model for the rest of society. There are several examples of teamwork during the film but there is one that proved to be truly impactful. There is a scene where Coach Boone makes the team run to the Gettysburg battlefield. He explained to them that they were just like those soldiers so long ago. They are fighting amongst themselves and that is their biggest downfall. He warns them to work together or be destroyed. This scene truly opens their eyes and proves to be the most important scene in their decision to unite. Teamwork is essential in any good sports film. Without teamwork in sports, you will never succeed. This gives relatable experiences for athletes today. We all have differences in society, but Remember the Titans reminds us that our differences together can lead to success.
If you have ever played a sport, you understand the necessity for good relationships and friendships between yourself and other players. I played tennis for several years. My teammates and I grew close not only because we practiced together every day of the week and played together, but because we also bonded outside of the courts. We grew close, almost as a second family. They were always there to confide in and lean on when things were rough, and to celebrate with in times of triumph. In Remember the Titans, Coach Boone forces the opposite races to room together and learn more about each other and their personal lives. Two players in this movie, Gerry and Julius clashed more than the rest of the players and this affected their performance on the field. This also affected the way society viewed the Titans. They were portrayed as a team that couldn’t play together or succeed. Once they began to form friendships they won games. This shows viewers how a team is more than strangers playing the same sport. It is about forming relationships that last a lifetime and making yourself a better person because of it. Especially in times of blacks and whites finding it hard to coexist, the Titans were very influential in proving society wrong.
Coach Boone takes on the leadership role in this film which is quite evident in his relationship with the players. Yoast, at first, was very skeptical about Boone because his coaching style was very different from Yoast’s. Yoast was laid back and quiet, while Boone was ‘in-your-face’ and demanded a full effort from all of his players. This coaching style gave the players something to bond together on, and built on their love of football. He pushed everyone very hard. His motto was, ‘Miss a block, and you run a mile.’ He tried always to be fair and applied the same very tough standards to everyone. He believed that life was tough and to help his players make it in the outside world he needed to be firm, even harsh at times. Yoast’s doubts about Boone dropped as he realized that Boone treated every player, black or white, in the same manner. Boone’s coaching style despite being harsh was very effective. He did not only focus on the game but shaping the team into men for the real world. There was a method behind his madness. Sometimes we may believe our coaches or leaders in life are out to get us and we do not understand their ways at first, but the majority of the time they have our best interest in mind. We may not even realize how much we have changed by their influence. This relationship proves to be a supporting element in making this a good film. If it wasn’t for the way Boone took a stand and coached his team, they would not have succeeded and became the men they learned to be.
In my experience, a good film makes you feel something. There is a specific scene in Remember the Titans that is so impactful and emotional. This is the scene where Gary is in the hospital after an accident and is said to be paralyzed from the waist down. Julius cries and goes up to Gary’s mother and she says to him that Gary does not want to see anyone but him and his tears will not make her son walk again. He walks into the hospital room and the nurse says that only family is allowed in the room. Gary says to the nurse, “Alice are you blind? Don’t you see the family resemblance? That’s my brother.” An already touching moment becomes extremely emotional when Gary says to Julius, “I was afraid of you Julius. I only saw what I was afraid of and now I know I was only hating my brother.” This scene ties together the whole basis of this movie. It shows how race does not define family and that sometimes we fear something so much it is easier to act out of hate than to face it. Realism is essential in any good sports film. This film is so influential and popular because of the real-life back story it has. If a movie is based on a true story, it makes it more interesting and relatable to see. When a movie has the element of realism it allows us to make connections and relate to experiences in our own lives. We are shown the struggles in history that many black people had to face and sometimes still do today. It makes us reflect on ourselves and how we choose to treat each other. This film is based off a true story, however, there have been disagreements on just how accurate the storyline is. Mary Blanton, an attorney in North Carolina, attended the school during the years of integration. She claims the movie does not show racism and hardships the way she experienced it. Blanton stated the following:
While the newly released Disney movie, “Remember the Titans”, makes good viewing, it bears little resemblance to the true story of 1971 or those earlier first years at my high school. In presenting its salutary message of racial understanding and human compassion, the movie plays fast and loose with history. The movie depicts Alexandria as a Hollywood-stereotypical Southern town, circa 1950s. But by the late 60s and early 70s, Alexandria was a cosmopolitan bedroom community for the rapidly expanding federal establishment, both military and civilian, in and around Washington. Even though this film is not 100% accurate, the story and message behind it is one that is definitely worth the watch. Remember the Titans has impacted people across the world and a lot of coaches make their players watch this movie together to this day. It teaches us to work together despite any differences we may have and opens our eyes to a world of equality and peace. If you are looking for a movie that will stick with you throughout life, this is the movie for you.
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