Wednesday, February 18, 2015

In Which I Go To A Movie Theatre

I am not being paid by Disney to do this review, but really I should be.

Mr. DayInTheLife and I took two of our kids to see a movie last night.  We are not movie theatre goers.  So I am proud to say that if this is the only theatre movie we see in all of 2015, we made an excellent choice.

Why Seeing a Pre-Screening of McFarland USA Yesterday Evening With My Family Was The Best Decision I've Made Since Earlier Yesterday When I Ate a Whole Not a Half of a Cinnamon Roll

"McFarland, USA poster" by Source. Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia -,_USA_poster.jpg#mediaviewer/File:McFarland,_USA_poster.jpg

I encourage you to click the link, but if you are not inclined to do so here is the premise of the movie from The Google: 

Track coach Jim White (Kevin Costner) is a newcomer to a predominantly Latino high-school in California's Central Valley. Coach White and his new students find that they have much to learn about one another, but things begin to change when White realizes the boys' exceptional running ability. More than just physical prowess drives the teens to succeed; their strong family ties, incredible work ethic and commitment to their team all play a factor in forging these novice runners into champions.
1.  The boys' families in the movie are migrant workers.  Nearly all of our kids' grandparents were migrant workers at some point in their lives and just like the families in the movie they worked hard to ensure a better life for their kids.  I am not sure my kids knew what exactly migrant workers were until last night.  Now, they know.  Don't worry, I am not that na├»ve to think that a Disney portrayal of migrant life would nail it completely, but at least we are further along in the explanation than we were before the movie. 

2.  This movie borders on sappy a few times, but it is a great family movie that, unless you are completely heartless, will have you cheering.

3.  There is no sex, no violence, no drugs, and nothing really of questionable content.  And yet, it tells a pretty amazing story of perseverance in the face of incredible odds.

4.  I am an ex-teacher and I will always have a special place in my heart for teachers.  As rainbows and unicorns as this sounds, I truly believe teachers can change lives for the better.  Of course, there is the flip-side of that coin and I believe whole-heartedly in that, too.  This is a story in which the teacher/coach changes lives for the good.  And, yet (as you will see at the end of the movie when script is run about what happened to all the real life characters) life still happens and just because you are a high school phenomena does not mean you will not still make some poor decisions.

5.  I ran cross country track in high school.  I can't say this brought back any fond memories for me.  I mostly hated cross country track and I wasn't fast.  And, now I think you know I run because I love to eat.  Despite that, I thought about these boys today on my run.  I tried not to because I really hate sentimentality.  But I couldn't help it.  They made me not be so whiny in my head.  Me not whiny?  That's powerful stuff.

This movie made me happy.  It's the right stuff.  It's based on events that really happened that make for a great story.  It's about real people that worked amazingly hard and it paid off for them. 

McFarland USA premieres February 20.  Get yer' butts off the sofa and take some loved ones to see it!  You'll thank me after.


Nomads By Nature said...

I'll have to look for this on DVD when it comes out. Thanks for the recommendation!

Megly Mc said...

Loved this movie. It's rare that I can take my kids to something that I actually want to see. I wish I could take my class, but I'll have to settle for showing it to them, next year, on DVD. :)