Thursday, January 18, 2007

FIlm Review: Hoosiers

Hoosiers is a good example of a film that moves too fast. Gene Hackman stars as a new high school basketball coach in small-town Indiana. He tries to do his best despite the absence of the school's two best players. The first player is a sure bet to turn around Hackman's new basketball program but some random hot teacher who also is the boy's unofficial guardian, who Hackman has a crush on, won't let him play because she wants him to focus on academics. The second player, who's not as good, is just flat-out disrespectful to him and walks out on him, and Hackman stands his ground and says, "fine, don't return." This leaves the coach with a short-handed rotation to work with, but Hackman, who is supposed to be the story's hero, naturally acts unphased and dispenses the following advice: "pass the ball three times before shooting it." Although it sounds brilliant when he says it, they still lose. Then, all of a sudden, "Scooter", the hot teacher's surrogate nephew, magically changes his mind, joins the team, they start winning and the rest is history. There's really a lack of anything gradual here, the big obstacles are all suddenly overcome and it just takes away the drama. Sure, the film is filled with those clich├ęd scenes where in the middle of a game en route to their state championship, they're one-point down with three seconds on the clock and they MIGHT lose if they don't make the basket, but without seeing the strenuous process by which the coach and the team turned themselves around, the payoff just isn't rewarding. The film is a classic among Indiana basketball fans and rightly so. The state's love of basketball is something special, and despite the lack of story, the film still portrays the heart of basketball country very well. Sadly, the story is too formulaic and devoid of drama. Did I also mention that the bickering hot teacher and the coach hook up later in the movie? Well, the movie is so predictable you'd have figured that out anyway

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm sitting in an English comp class, reading movie reviews for a paper that I have coming up. I just came across your page while trying to find bad reviews of the movie "Hoosiers". I noticed that you didn't like the movie. Aside from our differences in opinions on the quality of the film, you make some mistakes in what you wrote:

Scooter was the "hot teacher's surrogate nephew". Actually his name was Jimmy. There was no Scooter in the movie. Rather, the character played by Dennis Hopper was named "Shooter".

If you have any questions about this movie, you can feel free to drop me a line ( This movie was filmed at my school and I had a part in the movie.)