Jungle
The Final Season

The Final Season

Movie
Studio(s): 
Director(s): 
In Theatres: 
Oct 12, 2007
Grade:
A+
Running Time: 
1 Hour, 54 Minutes

Sean Astin stars as a girls Volleyball coach who gets a job as assistant coach of the undefeated, 19 time champions the Norway Tigers. When the school is threatened to be swallowed up by a much larger school all in the name of progress the team is given their chance to grab that twentieth win, this feat is given to Astin who must rally his team in the face of negativity and a faltering faith from the town.

The concept of this film has been done to death and the cast gave me a real “Made for TV” feel, which wasn’t helped by the films open, which sounded and looked a lot like a made for television program. Despite my lack of confidence the film grabbed my attention and then hurled me into a state of suspense with nail biting moments that had my audience rooting and clapping and reeling back in grimaces of
anticipation. This film has terrific storytelling.
 
There is an underlying message here, and even though I’ve only lived in the small town of Fort Mill in South Carolina, I have seen the benefits of a small town and its people and am appalled by the expansion of the town and its loss of something simpler. The Final Season paves the message throughout the film but, depending on which side of the fence you sit on, you don’t really take in the meaning until the final half of the film. It will either invest you deeper into the film, allowing you to empathize with the baseball players on a personal level, or you’ll miss the point completely. Me, I was totally invested.
 
I wasn’t so sure that I was going to enjoy having Rachael Leigh Cook in this film but the chemistry between her and Astin was very sweet and believable. I was also iffy about Astin all together, an actor who hasn’t really handled a notable lead role since 1993’s Rudy. He makes it work here. There was no point in the film where I thought the part got away from him.
 
Even if your not a baseball fan there is something here for you. No useless dialogue, no showboating as you would see in other films that create to unbelievable an atmosphere, and storytelling that keeps it simple and allows you to feel like your part of the scenes. Terrific movie to take your family to or go alone.

AJ Garcia
Review by AJ Garcia
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