Welcome to Strike Football
The Replacements
Review by Ross Anthony

A formulaic, root for the underdogs, football, feel good film that feels good. Late in the season the Washington Sentinels hire on "The Replacements" to fill the swelled helmets of the pro's picketing for larger bottom lines. Gene Hackman comes out of retirement to hand-pick and coach this team of misfits which include: a sumo wrestler, a convict, one over enthusiastic SWAT cop, a deaf guy, a coupla gangsta body-guards, a soccer player and Shane Falco (Keanu), the coulda-been that never-was.

Hackman throws for the heart and so does the film. It's just plain good fun, good solid dialogue peppered with plenty of grins, and a lot of football action. Especially well done, the breaking of the picket line scene where our motley crew watches as their heroes mock and taunt them, a lunchroom scene where the boys bicker over race, and the The Replacementsopening sequence with Keanu underwater scraping barnacles from boats. He comes across an old football trophy in the muck and tosses a submerged pass while Lit rocks on, "If I could get another chance I'd put it in a ziploc bag and keep it in my pocket." Hackman: "You know what separates the winners from the losers?"
Reeves: "Yeah, the score." Langton: "You get that bruise from the game or the fight afterwards?"
Reeves: "I'm not sure, it all kind of blurs into one big beating." The only drawback ... a cheer squad made up of lap-dancers. Oh, they have their moment, but the film never really explains why the cheer squad needed replacements also - did the regular's strike as well? Anyway ... Good music, good acting, good heart. One satisfied viewer cheered, "Finally, a good guy film!" I'd add, "That everyone can enjoy."

  • The Replacements. Copyright © 2000. Rated PG-13.
  • Starring Keanu Reeves, Gene Hackman, Orlando Jones, Jon Favreau, Brooke Langton, Rhys Ifans.
  • Directed by Howard Deutch.
  • Written by Vince McKewin.
  • Produced by Dylan Sellers at Warner Bros/Bel-Air.


Copyright © 2000. Ross Anthony, currently based in Los Angeles, has scripted and shot documentaries, music videos, and shorts in 35 countries across North America, Europe, Africa and Asia. For more reviews visit: RossAnthony.com

chili4 special olympians
power5 ra hforh radiop

Last Modified: Saturday, 16-Sep-2006 07:55:31 PDT