hoosiers 1986 reflection

Hoosiers (1986) – Reflection

Hoosiers (1986) is a movie based on redemption. The popularity of the movie continues in terms of rhetorical assessment. Although this movie was released with a little spectacular display and not too much industry awards, it has now stands testimony for the effective theme of teamwork, sports and agrarian values. After two decades of its release, the film now has impact on most of the audiences. In 1998, a survey to find out an all time favorite movie on sports indicated that Hoosiers was the much adorned movie. Similarly, the film was ranked 6th among the 50 greatest films on sports ever made. A survey by ESPN, on its 25th anniversary chose Hoosiers as the best sport movie ever released between 1979 and 2004. Therefore there arises a question as to why Hoosiers has been a movie that stimulates the emotions of many people even after this many years of its release since 1986.

The main concept of the film indicates that redemption can arise by means of grace and not by the ways of sacrificing, blaming or suffering. The special attention given upon the concept of redemption by grace provides us with an answer as to why the audience remains inspired and expect yet another release of a similar movie.

The concept of the movie comes into our real life when the famous philosopher Kenneth Burke says that people try to locate order in their lifestyle but when the order goes away from its correct course, people try to locate redemption by the process of victimization. According to Burke, the utmost function of rhetoric is its ability to locate or reproduce redemption or rebirth. It is seen that the explanations of redemption has come over the rhetorical interpretations and also believes that the mistakes and crimes needs apologies. Grace is a gift given by the Holy Spirit for gracious generosity. Norris concludes that grace can only be earned by people who has God’s love and not by suffering or sacrificing. Generally, the outline of the movie Hoosiers goes around a Basketball team. The most important fact of the movie is that it is based on the true story of Milan, a rural high school with 164 students winning the tournament against un urban school with 5000 students in Indiana. Pizzo, the creator of the movie wanted to do a movie with a life message rather than on sport genre.

The story is all about a coach with a mysterious past. Norman Dale played by Gene Hackman is the new coach who comes to a small town in Indiana to replace the coach of a school who is dead. Dale was earlier a college coach from where he was suspended for striking a player and later he moved to Navy until called upon to Hickory High School by Cletus Summers, the principal and an old College friend of Norman Dale. But the people of the town are suspicious about Dale’s past and therefore organize a meeting to discuss his past and also they wish the old star player Jimmy Chitwood’s re-entry into the team. At this point two powerful and important acts of grace are induced over Norman Dale. One is hiding his past and the other is the unexpected entry of Jimmy Chitwood to the meeting where he wishes to enter the team under the condition that the coach stays with the school team. Therefore Dale is asked to stay in the team. At another point, Everett who owns a drunken father, Shooter meets Dale and offers him grace by forgiving him about his past and ensuring him that it will be kept as a secret. Hence, Dale meets Shooter before the town meeting and asks for his assistance in the team, but was ignored by Shooter and later he made his presence at the beginning of the game. Overall, scenes like hiring a mysterious coach by the principal, confirmation made by Shooter not to disclose the truth, Dale’s request to shooter for assistance, Jimmy’s re-entry into the team and Everett’s love towards his father makes the team redeem their goal among all teams. Proposals and acceptance made the players and people around the team contributes to the theme of the movie. Thus the town gets redeemed by means of players and faith kept by the principal over Dale. Due to the redemption of the people in the town Dale is also redeemed of his mysterious past. He clearly says that the movie is not only about the sports but also about the people. In his point of view, redemption is the main theme of the movie Hoosiers.

The New York tribune says that the film is all about personal redemption of the coach. The Atlanta journal review accepted that Hoosiers is based on redemption. When analyzing Hoosiers, the basic message of the film is redemption by grace. Therefore Hoosiers gives hope to those who are not perfect and also to those who are not honored for doing good. This is the deeper message that made the movie very successful (Short & Short).

A personal experience when redemption by grace played an important role is as follows: My cousin brother was working with airways his envious junior wanted to spoil my cousin’s reputation. The junior circulated false news among high officials that resulted in my cousin’s termination from work. Soon after the incident the junior met with very serious difficulties both in his personal and professional life. The truth unfolded at his office but the officials retained him by giving him a second chance because he confided his deed and begged pardon to my cousin. This may be treated as redemption by grace due to the corrective action of the person involved.

Works Cited

Short, Brant & Short, Dayle Hardy Redemption by Grace: A Rhetorical Analysis of Hoosiers. Journal of Religion and Popular Culture Vol.XIV Fall 2006 Avilable: http://www.usask.ca/relst/jrpc/art14-hoosiers.html. Accessed on December 15, 2008


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