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Everybody's a critic - 'Friday Night Lights'

Friday, October 15, 2004

Four stars (out of four)

"Friday Night Lights" combines football movies "All the Right Moves," "Remember the Titans," "Varsity Blues" and "Any Given Sunday" into what is the best football movie ever made.

The small Texas town of Odessa, where this movie is based, eats, breathes and sleeps high school football. "Friday Night Lights" follows coach Gary Gaines (Billy Bob Thornton) as he leads the Permian Panthers through the ups and downs of Texas football. Ultimately, the Panthers have to recover from the devastating loss of their star player and redefine themselves as a team.

The ensemble cast is excellent and the movie captures the mindset of a small town that has nothing going for it but a great football team. The town experiences an ultimate high when the team wins and exhibits irrational and frenzied behavior when they lose.

- Geoff Schaefer

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Three and a half stars (out of four)

"Friday Night Lights," which chronicles the 1988 high school football season of thev Odessa, Texas, Permian Panthers, is truly an amazing movie.

It is a movie devoid of the sentimentality that is so characteristic of sports movies.

"Friday Night Lights" is not a movie about football, but rather about the people whose lives revolve around it. The movie uses the game as the medium for portraying the hopes and dreams of the players. It puts them face to face with choices, responsibilities and expectations.

The only rebuke I have is the movie's obnoxious camera work. The director used a hand-held camera, hoping to achieve authenticity, but the rapid movement and frequent blur were distracting and dizzying.

However, the genuinely honest and heartwarming "Friday Night Lights" will not disappoint you.

- Bojan Radojcic, student

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Two and a half stars

(out of four)

"Friday Night Lights" is an interesting movie if you like high school football. I thought it was exciting at times but also had its share of boring moments. It reminded me of when my high school football team went all the way to the state championships my senior year.

The movie is based on a true story told in a 1991 book. With little or no computer enhancement used in the movie, it takes on a more realistic look, especially when it comes to capturing the feel of 1988, when the movie takes place.

I would not recommend taking younger children to see "Friday Night Lights" because it contains scenes with partial nudity, as well as lots of hitting and blood. As a mother, I would take my children to see something less graphic.

- Tiffany Munroe, homemaker


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