Friday Night Lights
- 1 hr 58 min
Friday Night Lights is a drama that follows a high school football team. It was released in 2004. The film follows the highs and lows during the football team’s season. The drama is not related solely to what happens on the field. There is a lot of drama off the field, such as racism and socioeconomic problems that the film confronts. Billy Bob Thornton plays Gary Gaines, the head coach of the Permian Panthers football team. Gaines faces a lot of fame and pressure as the football coach in this small Texas town. He ends up pushing his star running back to the brink which results in the player getting a torn ACL and being forced to walk with a limp for the rest of his life. The player is also unable to ever play college or professional-level football. The quarterback of the team is also under a lot of pressure and he tries very hard to maintain a consistent level of play but he is unable to do so. Another player is forced to deal with an abusive, alcoholic father who places a lot of pressure on him. Coach Gaines really represents a father figure type role for many of his players. So much of the Coach’s job depends on how well his team does. In Texas, high school football Is incredibly important and if the Panthers have a losing season, the Coach could easily find himself without a job. The team manages to make it to the playoffs while all the players are undergoing struggles in their personal life. The one player with the alcoholic dad realizes that his dad is the way he is because he failed at his own football career many years earlier. The player’s dad has a breakdown and says that he only pushes his son as hard as he does because he wants him to enjoy success. He does not want him to be a failure like he is. The film ends with the team making it all the way to the finals to play for the Texas state championship. The team loses in the end to a strong high school team from Dallas. Many of the stories in Friday Night Lights are based on a real-life high school football from Odessa, Texas. The trials and tribulations that the young football players face on the field are really a metaphor for the difficulties they undergo while growing up.