Sport. Rated PG-13. 128 minutes.
credit: Walt Disney Pictures
of Kevin Costner in McFarland, USA (2015)
Inspired by actual
events and based on a true story, "McFarland, USA,"
is one of the best movies I've seen in a long time. Set in the
1980's, Jim White (Kevin Costner) and his wife and two daughters
move from Boise, Idaho to McFarland, California as he takes on
a teaching job as Assistant football coach.
is an Hispanic town and the poorest town in California. It seems
they are the only white family living there. The Mexican kids
at McFarland High School wake up at dawn and pick produce with
their families, then go to school, and after school, they pick
more produce. They are hardworking kids with no future.
Along comes Jim White,
who fails as an Assistant football coach and gets fired. He then
decides to form a cross-country running team. He clocks a kid
named Thomas (Carlos Pratts) who runs faster than he's ever seen.
Along with Thomas, he chooses another six team members. They train
and run in meets, but the kids never give up. At one point, they
run against the snobs of Palo Alto. A Palo Alto team member tells
them the only way Mexicans can run is if a cop is chasing them
or they're headed towards Taco Bell. Costner tells them, "You
have to believe in yourself."
This feel good story
will melt your heart. The kids' strong work ethic and determination
makes them go the distance. Their journey makes them a winner.
The sequence at the end of the movie with the real Jim White and
his running team along with their accomplishments is a nice touch.
The film is directed
by Niki Caro and Disney has struck gold. It's one of the best
performances Costner has done, as far as I'm concerned. I would
definitely recommend this movie, hands down. "McFarland,
USA" is now open in theaters nationwide.
by Ron Phillips - © 2014 - Disney Enterprises, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
of Carlos Pratts, Johnny Ortiz, Hector Duran, Rafael Martinez
and Sergio Avelar in McFarland, USA (2015)