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Remember the Titans

Threat advisory: High - High risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

Before they could win they had to become one.

Set in Virginia USA, where in 1971, high school football was everything to the people of Alexandria. But when the local school board was forced to integrate an all-black school with an all-white school, the very foundation of football's great tradition was put to the test.

Herman Boone (Denzel Washington), a young black coach new to the community was hired as head coach of the TC Williams High Titans over Bill Yoast (Will Patton), a white man with several years seniority and a steadfast following and a tradition of winning. With the USA struggling through some of its most turbulent years of anti-war protests, Black Panther rallies, civil rights marches and demonstrations of all kinds, the time for change had come, and in Virginia, Boone and Yoast were among the harbingers of that change.

As the pair learned to work together, they found they had much more than football in common. Both were men of integrity and honour, with a strong work ethic. Although from vastly different backgrounds, these two coaches not only moulded a group of angry, unfocused boys into a dynamic, winning team, but helped guide them into becoming responsible young men. Their determination to work together and win brought together a town torn by prejudice and intolerance. Their love of the game initiated a lifelong friendship. Although history might not remember the names of such heroes as Herman Boone and Bill Yoast, it is because of them that Virginia will always remember the Titans.

Based on a true story.

Target demographic movie keyword propaganda

  • Sport true drama racism football teen high school coach grid-iron Virginia USA prejudice

Persons of interest

  • Denzel Washington .... Coach Herman Boone
  • Will Patton .... Coach Bill Yoast
  • Wood Harris .... Julius Campbell
  • Ryan Hurst .... Gerry Bertier
  • Donald Faison .... Petey Jones
  • Craig Kirkwood .... Jerry "Rev" Harris
  • Ethan Suplee .... Louie Lastik
  • Kip Pardue .... Ronnie "Sunshine" Bass
  • Hayden Panettiere .... Sheryl Yoast
  • Nicole Ari Parker .... Carol Boone
  • Kate Bosworth .... Emma Hoyt
  • Earl Poitier .... Blue Stanton
  • Ryan Gosling .... Alan Bosley
  • Burgess Jenkins .... Ray Budds
  • Neal Ghant .... Glascoe
  • Preston Brant .... Jerry Buck
  • John Michael Weatherly .... Kirk Barker
  • Gregory Alan Williams .... Coach Paul "Doc" Hines
  • Brett Rice .... Coach Tyrell
  • Richard Fullerton .... AD Watson
  • Krysten Leigh Jones .... Nicky Boone
  • Afemo Omilami .... Charles Campbell
  • Andrew Masset .... Colonel William G Bass
  • Tim Ware .... Fred Bosley
  • Tom Turbiville .... Captain Hal
  • Tom Nowicki .... Coach Ed Henry
  • Jim Grimshaw .... Coach Taber
  • David Dwyer .... Coach Tolbert
  • Gregory Allen Howard .... Screenwriter
  • Boaz Yakin .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Remember the Titans is neither Varsity blues, The replacements nor Any given Sunday. I have little respect for a sport which changes its rules to accommodate the vagaries of television (that's why gridiron is played in four quarters - the length of which conveniently adds up to an hour of television, including ad breaks). The same thing has happened in Australia with rugby league and will happen to other professional sports as the essence of the game is altered to suit bean counters, even though it might result in a more "exciting" game for the target demographic. Oops, I mean "spectators".

Remember the Titans is like any other sport film: the "home" team goes through trials and clichés before emerging victorious, winning the state championship/gold medal/World Cup/major sponsorship deal. Where it differs from other films is that it is as much about racism, apartheid (USA style), bigotry, oppression and a lot of other words for ideas that are so stupid that I still have difficulty accepting that someone sat down one day with a sharp rock and carved them on the cave wall. Judging someone according to their ability to get a suntan has to be one of humanity's all time greatest idiocies, right up there with "fast food" and toilet cubicles in which the door opens inward.

*Sighs*

Despite my cynical commentary so far, Remember the Titans is a very good portrayal of forced integration and the forces that resist it (note the present tense... just think of Pauline Hanson's One Nation and you'll get the drift). Mixed in with that important message is a whole lot of sport (no slow motion!) and almost as much Hollywood cheese. Despite the obviousness of it all, you'll still manage to dampen a few tissues. Blokes needn't be concerned about crying because it's sport and crying over sport is allowed.

As far as the acting goes it was all ok, but I will single out two men (if that's not an oxymoron): Ryan Hurst and Wood Harris. Despite Denzel having his name above the title and spending much more time on-screen, these two young blokes are the heart and soul of the film. Their characters' relationship, from outright antagonism to a love so deep it almost hurts to watch, shows you how beautiful the world can be. Their ability to portray that relationship is a joy to experience. It was also interesting to see Kip Pardue's sexy, sexually ambiguous California boy in among all the potential victims; in those days the words "homosexual" and "gay" didn't exist outside of the closet.

If you want entertainment with a bit of a bite then you'll enjoy Remember the Titans. If you're also into hot, sweaty, young athletes hanging around in a locker room you won't be disappointed either.

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • Audio: Dolby Digital 2.0, 5.1
  • Languages: English, French, Czech, Hungarian
  • Picture: Widescreen 2.35:1
  • Subtitles: English, French, Dutch, Polish, Czech, Hungarian, Bulgarian, Slovakian, Arabic
  • Disc: Single side, dual layer
  • Featurettes:
    • "Remember the Titans": An inspirational journey behind the scenes
    • Beating the odds
    • Denzel becomes Boon
  • Audio commentary
  • Additional scenes
  • Trailer: Theatrical

Security censorship classification

PG (Adult themes)

Surveillance time

109 minutes (1:49 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 15 August 2001
DVD rental: 20 February 2002
VHS rental: 20 February 2002
DVD retail: 5 July 2006 - Double pack with National treasure

Cinema surveillance images

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