That Championship Season

Watch That Championship Season

  • R
  • 1983
  • 1 hr 50 min
  • 6.3  (673)

That Championship Season is a drama film that was released in 1982, directed by Jason Miller, who adapted his own Pulitzer Prize-winning play of the same name. The movie is about four former high school basketball teammates who reunite to celebrate their 20th anniversary of winning the state championship. The teammates, George Sitkowski (Bruce Dern), Phil Romano (Paul Sorvino), James Daley (Stacy Keach), and Tom Daley (Martin Sheen), along with their coach, Delaney (Robert Mitchum), spend the night together during which they reminisce their glory days.

The movie opens in a darkened room where the classmates along with their Coach (Robert Mitchum) celebrate Sitkowski's victory as a local politician. Over the course of the evening, the group becomes increasingly drunk, and their prejudices and disappointments rise to the surface. As the night goes on, some of the players reveal secrets about each other, and the bond of the group is slowly broken.

The film is set in the fictional town of Scranton, Pennsylvania, and uses this location to create a mood of hopelessness and economic depression. It also highlights the racism and anti-semitism that were prevalent at the time. The characters’ once prosperous hometown is now a symbol of a broken and unfulfilled American dream.

The film revolves around the characters of James Daley, the town's powerful mayor, Phil Romano, a wealthy businessman, Tom Daley, a hard-boiled alcoholic, and George Sitkowski, a corrupt politician. All these characters have achieved their individual successes but suffers emotionally or morally. The film's events occur entirely in James Daley's trophy room, and the teams gradually reveal that they have not fulfilled their youthful dreams. The conversation evolves around their lack of ideals, the mediocrity of their individual lives, and a sense of lost youth.

The film is a study of masculinity, friendship, and American values. It portrays the male psyche in crisis, and the imminent decay of the American dream. The players’ physical decay is paralleled by their moral decay, revealing that winning the title at the age of 18 carries consignments lasting a lifetime.

The acting performances in the movie are top-notch, with each character delivering a powerful performance. Robert Mitchum, in particular, stands out as the retired coach who displays a deep understanding of the motivations and frustrations of his former players.

In summary, That Championship Season is a gripping drama that explores the themes of American identity, masculinity, and disillusionment in post-war America. It’s a character-driven film, with a tight script that paints a picture of small town America that is often overlooked in Hollywood. Despite being over 30 years old, the movie remains relevant and relatable to audiences today. It's a must-watch for anyone interested in exploring the darker side of the American psyche.

That Championship Season
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 50 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.3  (673)