Kevin Costner + a true story + a team of underdogs + a happy ending = McFarland, USA. And if any one of those elements is a good enough reason to see this movie, then the combination is simply wonderful.
McFarland, USA is a feel-good movie about down-on-his-luck Coach Jim White (Kevin Costner) and an unwilling (and unlikely) team of cross-country runners who have more potential than anyone dreams is possible. But the secret to the team’s success is more than just learning to run, it is learning to work as a team and believe in something more.
Based on the 1987 true story, “McFarland, USA” follows novice runners from McFarland, an economically challenged town in California’s farm-rich Central Valley, as they give their all to build a cross-country team under the direction of Coach Jim White (Kevin Costner), a newcomer to their predominantly Latino high school. Coach White and the McFarland students have a lot to learn about each other but when White starts to realize the boys’ exceptional running ability, things begin to change. Soon something beyond their physical gifts becomes apparent—the power of family relationships, their unwavering commitment to one another and their incredible work ethic. With grit and determination, the unlikely band of runners eventually overcomes the odds to forge not only a championship cross-country team but an enduring legacy as well. Along the way, Coach White realizes that his family finally found a place to call home and both he and his team achieve their own kind of American dream.
Be sure to bring your tissues because team McFarland will tug at your heartstrings. There wasn’t a dry eye in the theater when the credits rolled.