another 2001 documentary. a bit like hoop dreams in its subject and scope, but has a different approach, method, and conclusion. it’s a really well done (except some of the music) look at high school football in the city where football was born – massillon, ohio. it does a surprisingly good job of staying objective – it presents both the benefits and pressures of being a star football player in a city where the sport is paramount, without casting judgment. there are interviews with townspeople and students who think that the football program has a stranglehold on the community in general and the school specifically. it addresses the issues of school funding, players getting away with more than they should, and more. overall it’s just a very comprehensive and objective look at the role the football program plays in this town of 33,000 people. though it follows three players on the team it doesn’t get as close to them as hoop dreams did – though intimate things are revealed the audience doesn’t get to know the players as well as they do in hoop dreams. as a social studies person i found it really interesting, but i think it appeals to people who are interested in sports (specifically football) or the documentary genre as well.