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High School Football

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A.J. Williams

English 103 section 5

Ms Chavez

March 26, 2006

The High School Football Life

Football is all around us. You go from pee-wee flag football for the very young kids all the way up to the NFL or world football league as careers. In most of the population, not too many kids make it past their senior year of high school. The kids that don't make it past high school football savor every moment of their time on the field. There is nothing wrong with that, except if the people around the game take it overboard. In Friday Night Lights by Peter Berg, the town is obsessed with their high school team, the Permian-Odessa Panthers. Having been in football for over ten years, I know what the movie is talking about. It is good that the town can get into their football team, but with how much they push the players to be perfect, it makes the guys on the team's life that much more hectic. The town's folk make them grow up way to fast. Even though this movie on the outside looks like a stereotypical sports movie, once the audience start watching it, you find out it seems to be almost a documentary on what players have to go threw to succeed in their lives and season.

Right from the beginning of the movie, it gives the view a quick scan of the city. There isn't much there. There is mostly nothing there. You could say it was a one road town surrounded by desert and oil dereks. The buildings are all tarnished and worn like they have not been refurbished in a long time. Finally at the end of the panning shot, you see something that looks like an oasis, the high school football field.

"A town for sale, Odessa, Texas has seen better days--the financial bust evident in its boarded-up shops and broken lives. Yet one hope sustains the community where, once a week during the fall, the town and its dreams come alive beneath the dazzling and disorienting Friday night lights...when the Permian High Panthers take to the field. In a city where economic uncertainty has eroded the spirit of its inhabitants, nearly everyone seeks comfort in the religion of the Friday night ritual, where the unfulfilled dreams of an entire community are shifted onto the shoulder pads of a team of high-school athletes." (ComingSoon.Net)

There was nothing in the town that the town people could live for, except for football. The town was going under and the people knew that. Their only outlet was that one night a week when there was football. The town getting into their high school team is a good thing. During my seasons of football, I always felt that I played better when there were people there to watch me and root me on. The one thing that I'm not sure I could do is be pushed really hard by the fans. I already have a hard enough time trying to perfecting the plays, but having the fans breath down my neck would just put me over the top.

In tying in all this information, you have to look at the filming and editing of the movie. In one review I read, it said, "If there were a problem with the film, it would be the disturbing use of ADE (attention deficit editing)" (www.oregonherald.com). He says that the movie is very sporadic in the editing format. They don't stay on one scene for any length of time, but instead, jump around to different focal points all in that one area, like the stands, the coach's, the game, etc. I feel that the way David Rosenbloom, A.C.E. edited the movie was perfect. Sure knows that's how my mind went when I was playing football in high school. A thousand different thoughts running through my mind at once; the crowd, the coach's, your family, your personal interactions with friends, school, everything. In just rethinking my experiences and relating them to the movie, my mind is doing the exact same thing. I have a lot of different thoughts running threw my head at one instance. So my personal experiences make me think the way it was edited was good. To someone that hasn't dealt with that type of pressure and work load, it may look too jumpy. Not staying on one scene long enough to understand it. That's what I love about the movie, its almost exactly what I felt and went threw. The way producers introduced the final game was exactly how it is too. With me not making it to the state championship, I felt like my last game was exactly like it though. The way the players walk out and even the song they used to introduce the players was perfect. "They even made a ballsy choice with the music to introduce the teams during the state championship by using a mostly unknown song called "New Noise" by the now defunct band Refused...this song friggin' rules" (www.supercalafragalistic.com)! Just the atmosphere this song creates is exactly what it was like. You heart beating as fast as the song's beat goes. In the beginning, it leads up by getting faster and faster with them walking out of the locker room, and then at once with their first steps on the field, it goes strait hard core rock.

Every character has their own problems they deal with. Mike Winchell, played by Lucas Black, is the quarterback of the team. Obviously, the quarterback has the most pressure of everyone on the team, besides the coach. He has to keep his team amped up for the next play, while keeping himself sharp enough to make each play perfect. Even with all those worries, he has more piled on top of him. At home, he lives with his mother (they never go into where the dad is). His older brother is off doing something else, most likely living by himself living his life. With his mother's health deteriorating, he asks his brother to come home, but he isn't able to for one reason or another. This makes his live even that much harder since he has to juggle his mother's health, school, and mostly

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