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USA: IFC Films
Director: Kenneth A Carlson
USA: 103 mins
USA Rated: R for language and a scene of teen drinking
USA Release Date: 21 September 2001 (Limited Release - New York)
In the shadow of a crumbling Norman Rockwell dreamscape, towns like Massillon, Ohio face an ongoing identity crisis and fiscal decline in the new dot com millennium. But while steel mills close and families drift away from such industrial pockets, Massillon's identity has remained intact. For whatever trouble that has besieged the town, Massillon has always had "the greatest show in high school football." In the birthplace of football and 10 miles from the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the Massillon Tigers have drawn more than fifteen thousand spirited fans to every game for more than a hundred years. For ten weeks out of the year, this provincial hamlet is ground zero for one of the greatest sports traditions anywhere. For ten weeks out of every year, the people of Massillon know who they are.
The 106th season of the 1999 Tigers finds Massillon, Ohio a "house divided". Following the team's poor season the previous year, the people of Massillon are faced with a school tax levy necessary to protect the jobs of teachers, coaches and the Massillon educational system itself. After three consecutive levy defeats, the town is split down the middle on the issue.
As the election approaches, the Tiger players come to realize that the fate of the levy and the future of their town seems to rest on their success, creating a pressure-filled atmosphere. Faced with obstacles on and off the field, the Tigers must endure criticism, accusation and self-doubt. Taking on these challenges, THREE YOUNG STARS emerge to carry the burden of the town they love into an uncertain future. Entering the final game of the season against mortal enemy Canton McKinley, these young men and their coaches come to understand the power of tradition, the depth of their character and the undeniable force of destiny.
Directed, co-produced and written by Kenneth A Carlson.