Prejudice, desegregation, and standing up for principles is what this film is about. Set at the onset of the seventies, a successful white high school football team is integrated, gaining a black coach in the process. From there, we get the expected racial tensions on the team, in the school, and in the community. Thanks to the determination of the new coach, they come together as a team and advance to the state championship.
Denzel Washington is one of the best actors out there, and he truly becomes Coach Boone. There is a single-minded determination there that a successful coach must have, but it's bolstered by many oh-so-human touches. The supporting cast is solid, especially Ryan Hurst as Gerry Bertier, the team captain.
It's hard to believe this was based on a true story in some ways. The plot fits together almost perfectly without feeling manipulated. I can't see any references, but we probably have some invention or combined of the real life characters involved, but it works. The time period is very well captured, and the feelings of resentment brought out by those who don't like change are very real.
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