Varsity Blues

release year: 1999
genre: drama/comedy
viewing setting: home DVD, 12/31/03

synopsis: In a small town in Texas, where football is everything, a group of friends must contend with an overbearing coach as well as their own problems.

impressions: Very entertaining. It was a good mix of funny parts, football drama, and serious high school issues. The driving force here was the insane level of importance that this community placed on its winning football ways.

things to watch for: The big game at the end, when the players finally stand up to their evil coach.

acting: Jon Voight is the standout here, as the coach who's so used to winning - and thrives on being in control - that he's willing to do anything, including sabotaging his players' careers by making them play injured. Paul Walker is good as the star quarterback who gets hurt, and James Van Der Beek does a good job as the backup quarterback who suddenly finds himself in the spotlight. The big guy who played Billy Bob put on a good show, ditto for the black guy who never got to show his stuff due to the coach's racism.

final word: Good high school sports fun.

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