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Directed by:
Davis Guggenheim
Cast: Carly Schroeder, Dermont Mulroney, Elisabeth Shue

Written by:
Tony DeFrancisco

October 1, 2007

“One day, not today, not tomorrow, not this season, probably not next season either but one day, you and I are gonna wake up and suddenly we're gonna be like every other team in every other sport where winning is everything and nothing else matters. And when that day comes, well that’s, that’s when we'll honor them.” – Matthew McConaughey, “We Are Marshall”


Earlier this weekend, I saw “We Are Marshall.” That has to be the saddest excuse for any movie that I’ve seen. It tries too much to be an inspirational drama, but what it really becomes is a boring piece of crap that’s only point on being on the earth is to only remind us of what happened back then, making it more of a post-it reminder than a quality flick. The reason that I bring this up that also this weekend I saw a film called “Gracie.” What “We Are Marshall” lacked in inspiration, “Gracie” gets so much more with it. “Gracie” may just be the last great inspiration film since… “Rudy.” Crap, has it really been THAT long? Uhh… anyway… let’s get on with it.

Gracie is just your usual teenager, with problems of her own and a family that annoys the living piss out of her. Her older brother, a soccer player and her best friend, gets killed in a car crash after losing a big game. This event basically changes Gracie’s life. She loses her best friend and even is willing to lose her virginity to college guys. Her family is so unsupportive of Gracie that when Gracie decides to change her life around and start to play on the same varsity team her brother was on, they try talking her out of it, because you know that girls can’t play sports, right? Well, it just so happens that Gracie is out to show her parents, her best friend, the boys on the team, and the coach off that she is game material. We watch her go through the numerous cuts of the tryout and being discredited by her teammates and being called a dyke by girls. But Gracie is out to make it happen.

“Gracie” works for the sole reason of Carly Schroeder. Gracie is just a rebel, like one of your friends who put popcorn in the microwave for a minute extra JUST to see what will happen. She introduces us even at the beginning of the movie, when she tries to turn the senior into having sex with her, showing us that she doesn’t care anymore about her virginity, but that she is so seductive and seems so experienced in the process that it makes you wonder if she has done it before. Then “Gracie” introduces us to someone that we never seen – a different side of her. Does she want to be a complete rebel all her life, or does she ACTUALLY want to be someone like her brother once was? The change of her mind is just one of the many reasons why this movie is much better than all of your inspirational sport films.  And I’m sure I don’t really need to tell you about Carly Schroeder’s performance. If any of you guys seen “Mean Creek,” you already know what you are getting yourself into. She is a talented young actress that I don’t want to see go away from the spotlight any time soon.

If “Gracie” taught me anything, it taught me that if we are really affecting any lives with our lives, we should really do something about it. Later on in the film, Gracie’s dad, played by Dermont Mulroney (playing in a role that is FINALLY not a damn romantic film), is so unsupportive of her daughter’s decisions that he refuses to train her. Her dad, who coached her brother and actually was a soccer player of his own at one point in his life, realizes that what he is doing is making her turn out like a total "crackwhore" (which if you guys are really wondering, this is no child’s film, as it deals with a lot of elements that a lot of parents should discuss with their sons and daughters beforehand, like death and sex) and changes his mind and decides to coach her. It turns out that Gracie actually has a lot of talent, and Dermont Mulroney’s character is one of the greatest parts of the film (for once). He displays a lot of talent (for once) and becomes a charming and likeable guy (for once), and he actually acts (again, for once). I can tell that a lot of people who like Dermont Mulroney will hate the living balls out of this movie. This is not Dermont Mulroney. He is worse than this. I know he will mess it up later in the long run, but for now, let’s enjoy it while we can, Dermont Mulroney haters.

“Gracie” is based on a true story from co-star Elisabeth Shue’s life. It just so happens that Elisabeth Shue’s husband is the director of the film (and of “An Inconvenient Truth”) Davis Guggenheim. “Gracie” is not only one of the greatest films for the same reason that it actually made a difference in soccer, but can you imagine what would have happened today if girl soccer wasn’t around? For the first time since “Fight Club,” “Gracie” inspired me to do something with my life. And no, it isn’t because I’m planning on being a "crackwhore", or a girl’s soccer player, but because I can finally do something that I want to that doesn’t decide on how I write, but how I voice my opinion. Yeah, two different stories here, but I think you guys all get the drill and what I mean, right? So I don’t have to go into it any more than what I already did?

I need some more cowbell!


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