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In 1973, a spiritual awakening captured the heart of nearly every player on the Woodlawn High School football team.Their dedication to love and unity, in a newly desegregated school filled with racism and hate, leads to the largest high school football game ever played in the torn city of Birmingham, Alabama, and the rise of superstar, Tony Nathan.
This, to me, is one of the best movies I've ever seen. And not just for faith based movies...I'm referring to all movies.
Jon Voight's portrayal of Paul "Bear" is brilliant. You can't really define it as only a faith based movie, or a football movie...it's a movie that some would say is just to amazing to be a true story. But that's what makes it so special...because the story being is almost a direct account of what occurred at this high school between 1973-74!
The extra's in the blu-ray have most of the real life counterparts describing what it was like to see their lives being portrayed on the big screen. They all agreed that it was a very accurate depiction of their lives...and how this story unfolded.
I'm not going to tell you the plot, or spoil it in any way. I'd rather you be surprised in the way that I was.
If there was one movie I could recommend to everyone, this would be the one.
It's just that good!
Woodlawn [Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack + Digital HD]
However, I have a big problem with the actress who portrayed Tony's mother - Sherri Shepherd. To me her presence in this movie discredited Tony's mom. This movie was about finding hope and Love in the midst of such horrible hatred and to cast an actress who went all the way to the supreme court to get out of the responsibility of providing care for her own child - a child she wants nothing to do with...somehow she felt very out of place for me. I was disappointed. They surely could have found someone who brought glory to this beautiful story of God's Love and endurance.
No foul language, no sex scenes (except a lovely kiss or two), a hint of domestic violence, and of course the violence of the times, which is our history and therefore worth letting the children watch and learn from so it is never repeated by them.
The writing, pacing, cinematography, casting, acting and music are all very good. The integration of archival historical footage with new footage adds a nice touch, giving the true story an extra degree of validity and power.
One message it really drives home is the impact and importance of the individual. We need to help give others hope and one person can make a difference to another who makes a difference to another. The ending footage of Billy Graham helps hit a home run message to share the good news with others.