Edge

The Rock, gang of teens portray gritty realism in Gridiron Gang

Like this weekend’s premieres, Gridiron Gang is a study in contrasts. As one would expect, the movie plays to its demographic – if you enjoyed Remember the Titans you will certainly find a lot to like about this film – but it also provides a startling juxtaposition between films like Titans and the tragic circumstances that surround troubled youths like the ones profiled here.

For every laugh the movie delivers they counter with an often graphic portrayal of the horrifying events these teens must witness and the emotional impact is amplified when you consider that the film is based on a true story.

While some characters and events are fictionalized, the bulk of the story – and even some of The Rock’s dialogue – is taken straight from footage captured in the Emmy-winning documentary on which the movie is based.

Casting these elements against each other, however, does disrupt the film in a few places and scenes are plagued by unevenness; just prior to a compelling drive-by scene there are a few jilted seconds of dialogue which seem just a step out of touch with reality. It would be less of an issue if the problem wasn’t repeated throughout the movie and while there are hiccups like this throughout the movie, the generally effective performances by a few talented young actors and an interesting, documentary-like visual style capably complement what is already a powerful, inspiring story.

The Rock’s performance is solid, although much flexing of his acting muscle isn’t necessitated; documentary footage included with the credits implies that his character, coach Sean Porter, was the sort of dry, slightly abrasive foot soldier that The Rock has already played in other movies. In his emotional scenes, however, he’s effective. By the end of the movie, though, it’s just as you might have expected: The story is so riveting and the message so positive that the cheese and predictability don’t really matter.

Nate Harris may be contacted at n.harris2@umiami.edu.

September 12, 2006

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

Boston College star Ky Bowman came down with a 102-degree fever on Saturday night. Jordan Chatman an ...

A six-pack of Hurricanes notes on a Sunday: ▪ New UM defensive coordinator Blake Baker has asked UM ...

Emese Hof and No. 20 Miami think they can play with anyone, and it shows. Hof scored 18 of her 25 po ...

New University of Miami baseball head coach Gino DiMare wanted to start strong. He got perfection. T ...

Former University of Miami star running back Mark Walton was arrested late Friday on a charge of mis ...

UM alumna Alina Mayo Azze, who has covered a myriad of topics during her 37-year career, has been a ...

Happiness and well-being scholar Tal Ben-Shahar is UM’s newest Distinguished Presidential Scholar. ...

The University of Miami will host the first symposium to explore LGBTQ human rights across the Ameri ...

UM experts react to a new ban that prohibits people in Key West from using certain types of sunscree ...

A matchmaker extraordinaire, Ricardo Cepeda, the manager of the UM Zebrafish Facility, is passionate ...

The No. 20 Miami women's basketball team stormed back from a 14-point deficit to pick up the bi ...

Brian Van Belle struck out five over six shutout innings to help the Canes sweep Rutgers on opening ...

The Hurricanes dropped a tight contest with the Eagles in Chestnut Hill, 64-57. ...

The sophomore first baseman slugged his second homer of the weekend to lead the Canes to a series wi ...

Junior Renate Grimstad led the way for Miami and is tied for 18th at one-over-par, while sophomore K ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.