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Friday Night Lights - 나는 한국 사람이 아니다 [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
한국 사람이 아니다

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Friday Night Lights [Nov. 21st, 2004|09:05 pm]
한국 사람이 아니다
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I don't like football. I never have. I find it barbaric, unsporting and boring. Which, compared to other sports, including hockey and baseball, it truly is. I can only attribute its popularity to the same sort of mass hypnosis that is the only explanation for the presidential election outcome earlier this month.

That being said, I did like Friday Night Lights. Because this is a move that transcends its subject and becomes something more.

Based on real life events, the film chronicles one season of the Periman-Odessa Panthers on their quest for the Texas State Championships. It's gritty and as close to a documentary as real life without being, you know...real. And it's very interesting to see in the context of a post-World Series Boston. Especially when they talk about curses.

And it's got some chilling lines, like a caller to a sports-talk radio show: "There's too much learning going on at that school." And then you remember, oh yeah: Texas is a red state.

But the most fascinating part, beyond the underdog drama, beyond the black-vs-white playoff finale, is Billy Bob Thornton's reunion with his eight-years-older Sling Blade costar Lucas Black. They had chemistry then, and they still have now. And it's the best part of the film...well, at least if you don't like football at all.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: johnnyg
2004-11-22 02:37 am (UTC)
I'm told the book is really excellent.
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[User Picture]From: talonvaki
2004-11-22 02:44 am (UTC)
Yes...and the director, Peter Berg, is the author's cousin.
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[User Picture]From: jwithington
2004-11-22 03:10 am (UTC)
1. i love baseball, but i would never argue for football being more boring.

2. how can you say football is more violent than hockey?

3. the key thing is that texas is a FOOTBALL state, not that it is a red state.

don't take my debating personally, but really.
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[User Picture]From: talonvaki
2004-11-22 04:07 am (UTC)
Easy.
1) the standing-around quotient in football is ridiculous for a so-called "contact" sport.
2) career-ending injuries in high school aren't nearly as common in hockey as in football.
3) The fact that people call into a radio station to complain that "there's too much learning down to the school" is an inherently red state zeitgeist.
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From: lifewithmikey
2004-11-22 05:02 am (UTC)
2) career-ending injuries in high school aren't nearly as common in hockey as in football.

But I doubt there are as many U.S. high school ice hockey players are there are football players - except possibly outside the Northeast and the Great Lakes, the traditional hotbeds of hockey.

3) The fact that people call into a radio station to complain that "there's too much learning down to the school" is an inherently red state zeitgeist.

To be fair, the same goes for many blue-state innercity neighborhoods where young minorities may view sports (particularly football and basketball) as their ticket out of the ghetto.
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[User Picture]From: talonvaki
2004-11-22 01:01 pm (UTC)
There's got to be a lot of high school hockey...where do all those college players come from?
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[User Picture]From: jwithington
2004-11-22 05:21 am (UTC)
all i know is, there's no way i'm gonna just play a friendly game of hockey, what with the skating and the smashing and the pucks fliyng, cuz that IS violent and scary. but i definitely play football with friends and it is fun.

baseball has a lot more standing around that football.

also, i dated a texan for five years, and i kinda hate that texas is one of those things that it is okay to bash. there are a lot of good things about texas.

someone complaining about wanting less learning and more football is a football zealot thing, and while there are more football zealots there than anywhere else, this comment is more football than republican.

you're stereotyping in one of the only ways that is still okay in this country--making fun of texans/southerners as being stupid.
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[User Picture]From: talonvaki
2004-11-22 01:07 pm (UTC)
I'm actually not sterotyping anything. I'm commenting on a movie...which does do a lot of what you are talking about. I'd like to think that my commentary on the film is in the same vein as the film itself.

I mean, in Supersize Me, they sterotype fat people. In Fahrenheit 9/11 they bash Bush. So it follows that a review of one of those films would contain some of that attitude...and I think my reviews of those did.
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[User Picture]From: jwithington
2004-11-23 01:36 am (UTC)
fair enough. :-)
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[User Picture]From: drjayphd
2004-11-22 04:58 am (UTC)
I've really gotta start reading the book... is the movie as kind to Odessa as the book? (That is to say, not at all.)
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[User Picture]From: talonvaki
2004-11-22 12:59 pm (UTC)
Yeah, it is. If portraying Odessa as a place that no one would ever want to visit, let alone live in, is what you had in mind...
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[User Picture]From: gev
2004-11-22 05:06 am (UTC)

Texas maybe be red...

but Travis County is BLUE!  yay!
Despite being the capital of Texas, Austin really isn't Texas.
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[User Picture]From: talonvaki
2004-11-22 01:00 pm (UTC)

Re: Texas maybe be red...

True dat.
Haven't been there, but from what I know of it...it's a little island of blue in a hostile red sea.
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From: madbaker
2004-11-22 05:19 pm (UTC)

Re: Texas maybe be red...

It reminded me of Sacramento in a lot of ways. Small-town capital of a big state. Great music scene, too!
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From: enickmatic
2004-11-22 11:40 pm (UTC)

First comment in weeks; damn straight it's a long one.

Football is really an acquired taste. Being a player, I can attest to this fact. When I first came out for the team, I hadn't the faintest idea as to how to play, what the rules were, and whether or not I'd even be any good at it. What had brought me to sign-ups in the first place was the relentless insistence of the coaches and gym teachers around me that since I was so fast (they had recognized me from track and field, where I sprint), I would be a good addition to the team. I tried to keep an open mind all of that year about the game, but it was to no avail. I hated the game. I hated the rules. I hated standing around and getting yelled at. But, this was all because I didn't grasp the game as an experienced player should've.

That was two years ago.

Now I'm on the same team and it's my last game of the season. In my time on the team I've learned the rules, I've become a valuable asset to the team, and I've even become the varsity running back. If someone had predicted this future to me in the middle of my freshman season, I'd have told them to get lost. But, really, more than anything else, the game grows on you. The camaraderie that you get with a group of football players-- guys, in essence, essentially defending each other's backs in the name of the greater good-- is unique to football. You don't get baseball players willing to sacrifice their own bodies for the team in order to gain a single yard. It's a different sport.

To me, and probably to many other football aficionados, the game's most paramount draw is the stuff you don't see by simply watching it. It's the feeling you get when you strap on that helmet every friday night and work as hard as you can with all of your friends on the team to surmount an opposition.

So yea. I can understand not liking football from an outsiders perspective. I used to be just like you. But the intangible aspect of the sport, in my eyes at least, is its more admirable quality.

And as an aside, Texas is fucking insane when it comes to every sport. My cousin quit his middle school soccer team last year because they were scheduling mandatory practices (again, for middle schoolers) in 105+ degree heat. In the off-season.
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[User Picture]From: talonvaki
2004-11-23 03:12 am (UTC)

Re: First comment in weeks; damn straight it's a long one.

Thank you for this side of it...as you say, I can only know it from a spectator's perspective, unlike baseball and, in a way, even hockey (ball hockey and sock hockey).

It reminded me of war movies, watching this...So I think I see a parallel for the camaraderie in that. Which, of course, is another thing I'm not likely to experience first-hand.

I am glad you commented, Nick. Thanks.
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