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Published On: Thu, Aug 14th, 2014

‘When the Game Stands Tall’ Review: De La Salle true story becomes great family film

Audiences have already seen the underdog overcome the giant in countless sports films. When the Game Stands Tall examines the fall of the giant, which rise again on the back of faith and character. The great cast, led by Jim Caviezel and Michael Chiklis, bring unsung heroes of the De La Salle football program to life.

when-the-game-stands-tall-jim-caviezel-Based on a the book by Neil Hayes, the film opens as De La Salle Spartans peaks during their 151 game winning streak, led by coach Bob Ladouceur (Caviezel) and then collapses as the new class of seniors are arrogant and apathetic. A couple of doses of tragedy impede the team’s focus and leadership, but the story is about redemption.

Battling the brutal heat, the Spartans faces the highly favored Long Beach Poly and must face the reality that they are now David facing Goliath. The film chronicles the remainder of the season as the character of the players and the priorities for the coaches are the focus of the examination.

Chiklis is the perfect foil for Caviezel’s more stoic Ladouceur, often breaking the tension with a well-timed joke or jab. Alexander Ludwig (The Hunger Games, Vikings) shines as the star running back Chris Ryan, who has an abusive father (Clancy Brown) living out his dreams through his son.

The second unit shot the football in full speed, so the action is certain to appease the die-hard fans. That said, director Thomas Carter (Coach Carter) keeps the focus right where it belongs – on the team and the coaches. Caviezel brings the inspiring Coach Ladouceur to life with a gravitas of legends.

When the Game Stands Tall arrives in theaters Aug. 22

Overall When the Game Stands Tall receives 4 out of 5 stars.

While the story may be predictable in many ways, the streak alone is worthy of immortalizing on screen, but Carter found a way to chronicle the true legacy of De La Salle – integrity, focus and teamwork. The faith aspects of the film are understated (it is a private Catholic all male school in California), but the messages are strong and powerful.

Add a star if you are a fan of Facing the Giants – you will certainly love this one!

Yes, that is a cameo by Maurice Jones-Drew, who is an alum of De La Salle.

When The Game Stands Tall

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professional in 2008 on sites like Examiner and blogs: Desk of Brian, Crazed Fanboy. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) will be a licensed Assembly of God Pastor by the Spring of 2017. "Why do we do this?" I was asked and the answer is simple. "I just want the truth. I want a source of information that tells me what's going and clearly attempts to separate opinion from fact. Set aside left and right, old and young, just point to the world and say, 'Look!'" To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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