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Remember the Titans is easily one of the best biographical sports films ever. From the strong characterization to the emotional drama to the powerful music, what other sports film could top it? You could say it’s an oldie but a goodie. The movie came out in 2000. It’s based on the true story of T.C. Williams High School in Alexandria, Virginia. It takes you all the way back to the time of 1971. The movie starts with the integration of two schools to form T.C. Williams High School. The Virginia schools were segregated for generations, but these players and coaches changed it all. Coach Harmon Boone, played by Denzel Washington, was brought to T.C. to take over as head coach with an all-white coaching staff. As you can tell that didn’t go over too well. He took the spot of the championship title holding head coach Yoast, played by Will Patton. Coach Boone was reluctant to take on the position because he had lost his previous job the same way coach Yoast was about to. Boone finally accepts the position because the black community saw him as a symbol of pride and respect, which they felt like they didn’t have in their community. He didn’t want to leave Yoast high and dry so Boone asked him to be the assistant coach.
The movie takes you along the journey of a team racially divided. It highlights not only how the black and the white players learn to interact with each other, but how the two coaches in a twist of fate work together to lead the team to victory. It was especially moving because it was during a time when that was not the way of life, which set an example for the whole community. The film deals with many social issues such as discrimination, racism, desegregation, prejudice, and aggression. It then brings up the question of what is right and what is wrong, which challenges the characters. You could compare Remember the Titans to the movie 42. The movie deals with racism, prejudice and discrimination just like Remember the Titans. Only in this case 42 focuses on Jackie Robinson. It’s about how he’s discriminated against by not only his team but the fans as well. Although 42 an amazing movie, you only see the storyline through Jackie’s eyes. It would have been more interesting if the movie had spent more time on the other characters. That’s where Remember the Titans surpasses 42. You don’t just see what happens on the football field. You get to see the coach’s personal lives as well as some of the players, which then ties you in more emotionally. You can also use this movie as a teaching or learning tool. It depicted very well how it was back in the 1970’s.
The relationships between the characters in the movie is really what puts Remember the Titans over the top. Seeing how the team overcomes their differences due to the love of the game is very interesting to watch. You see how the two main players Gerry Bertier, played by Ryan Hurst, as well as Julius Campbell, played by Wood Harris create an amazing friendship after finally being able to understand each other. In the beginning, they treated each other with such ignorance and hatred. They couldn’t stand to be around each other. Until they realized that not getting along was affecting football. They both loved the game as well as winning. In Virginia, football was like a way of life to these boys. It was beautiful to see their friendship grow. Now onto the coaches, Coach Yoast along with Coach Boone knew that it was very important for the team to have a united front. Also to develop an understanding of each other’s perspectives. They soon found out that trust wins over each others differences. Seeing how these characters worked together gave the rest of the team hope. Like I stated before, this movie can be used as a learning tool. You learned from the movie that you can put your differences aside for a greater cause. Whether it just be for a game or something even bigger. Understanding where other people come from is very important. You can learn things you had never known before. You see that through the coach’s relationship. They put their differences aside and won the championship game. At the end of the day Remember the Titans will always go down in my book as the best sports movie.
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