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Hoosiers (1986)

Gene Hackman , Barbara Hershey , David Anspaugh  |  PG |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (380 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Gene Hackman, Barbara Hershey, Dennis Hopper, Sheb Wooley, Fern Persons
  • Directors: David Anspaugh
  • Writers: Angelo Pizzo
  • Producers: Angelo Pizzo, Carter DeHaven, Derek Gibson, Graham Henderson, John Daly
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, Letterboxed, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: Spanish, French
  • Dubbed: Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: February 29, 2000
  • Run Time: 114 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (380 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 0792843592
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,813 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Hoosiers" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Collectible Trivia Booklet

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Nominated* for two OscarsÂ(r) and hailed by Sports Illustrated and ESPN as one of the best sports movies of all time, this triumphant tale of a high school basketball team's long-shot attempt to win the state championship is filled with edge-of-your-seat suspense and breathless excitement! Featuring "fast-break cinematography that catches the pace of the game.

Amazon.com

One of the most rousingly enjoyable sports movies ever made, this small-town drama tells the story of the Hickory Huskers, an underdog basketball team from a tiny Indiana high school that makes it all the way to the state championship tournament. It's a familiar story, but sensitive direction and a splendid screenplay helped make this one of the best films of 1986, highlighted by the superb performances of Gene Hackman as the Huskers' coach, and Oscar nominee Dennis Hopper as the alcoholic father of one of the team's key players. As the drama unfolds we come to realize that many of the characters (including Barbara Hershey as a schoolteacher with whom Hackman falls in love) are recovering from disappointing setbacks, and this depth of character is what makes the otherwise conventional basketball story so richly rewarding. Like Rocky, Rudy, and Breaking Away, this is a quintessentially American movie about beating the odds and rising above one's own limitations. Just try to watch it without cheering! --Jeff Shannon

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
75 of 79 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magical March 28, 2003
Format:VHS Tape|Verified Purchase
From the opening scenes of this film--majestic shots of a car traveling the rural midwest on a crisp autumn morning--HOOSIERS serves notice to the viewer that he or she is in for a wonderful movie experience. Set in a tiny Indiana town half a century ago, HOOSIERS captures the look and feel of rural Americana, of a hardworking people with a single commonality: their love for basketball. The pure innocence of this film, innocence long lost over the subsequent decades, is magical.
Gene Hackman portrays Coach Norman Dale, an outsider who comes to basketball-crazy Hickory, Indiana, to coach the high school team. Haunted by mistakes made in his past, Dale is eager for the second chance he has been given. Immediately, his no-nonsense, stress-the-fundamentals coaching philosophy puts him at odds with the town, yet Dale refuses to compromise his principles. He survives--barely--a petition for his ouster, and the rest of the movie warmly portrays the town of Hickory and its high school basketball team coming together, a team that makes a magical run through the Indiana State Tournament.
Barbara Hershey as Myra Fleener, Hickory's assistant principal, and Sheb Wooley as superintendent/principal Cletus--the man who hires Dale--are solid. Yet Dennis Hopper gives the best performance as Wilbur "Shooter" Flatch. Shooter, a former great player himself and father of one of the boys on Coach Dale's team, is the town drunk; despite his alcoholism, his knowledge of the game is immense, and Dale enlists his aid. The reformation of this character--the feeling and depth that Hopper gives this role--is exceptional.
Director David Anspaugh gives us a sensational "feel good" movie, augmented by Jerry Goldsmith's powerful musical score. HOOSIERS tells a beautiful story, so magical in its depiction you'll be cheering from your chair. Highly recommended.
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48 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars MUCH MORE THAN GREATEST SPORTS MOVIE OF ALL TIME! February 11, 2000
Format:VHS Tape
It is purely coincidental that the backdrop for this movie happens to be high school basketball or sports of any kind: This is a genuinely great movie, leaving the audience feeling good about themselves and willing to search for a second chance at success in life, no matter how great the failure. A one-word description of the movie? REDEMPTION. This theme runs throughout, i.e., a second chance...for the town drunk, for the coach, for the wannabe assistant coach, for the old-maid school teacher, for the team, for Jimmy Chitwood, for the drunk's son, for Strap, for the town, for the principal, for the players who quit, for the equipment manager, for the school bus...with the movie on video, you now have a second chance to watch and enjoy this great movie! It is worth the redemption price! If you already have seen it, after reading this review you may see it through a different perspective; if you have not seen it, I know you will thoroughly enjoy it, over and over again. Hoosiers is not just my favorite sports movie, it is my favorite movie of all time. The movie truly is about redemption, about people failing and being given a second chance. Some handle it better than others, but it cuts a true slice out of life in the 1950s and the 2000s! We should all get that kind of second chance! The best part is, we do. Those who succeeded in Hoosiers accepted their second chance and made something of it. I watch this movie any time that life hands me a setback or any time that I fail or fall. It is a better pick-me-up than any anti-depressant. So, wipe your slate clean and watch Hoosiers again for the first time!
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35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yep, this is how it was... October 4, 2001
Format:DVD
Maybe it's because we're the smallest state west of the Alleghenies or maybe we just have this thing about Indiana, but Hoosiers (and we can't understand why that term is a perjorative for some people) have an inordinate pride in their home state.
So, small wonder that the movie Hoosiers is a staple in every Indiana video collection.
This is your classic David vs. Goliath tale based on a true story that's at the core of Indiana basketball mythology - the magic year back in the early 1950s (can't remember the exact season) in which tiny Milan (pronounced MILE-un, not like the city in Italy) in southern Indiana went all the way to the Indiana State High School Basketball Finals and emerged state champ.
I grew up in small town Indiana in the '50s. The characters, the places, the fervor surrounding the local basketball team are instantly recognizable and dead-on. These are my people and my places and the filmmakers got it exactly right.
The opening scenes showing Gene Hackman driving through the Indiana countryside probably don't mean much to folks from outside Indiana and the midwest, but they almost bring a tear to my eye.
As a side note, there's a little white country church where Hackman pauses to get his bearings. It stood at a crossroads in Boone County just northwest of Indianapolis. It was one of several churches that went up in flames in the late 1990s at the hands of a church arsonist. It's part of the local lore.
As far as the characters go, Hackman did a credible job, but the real star of this film is Dennis Hopper. Barbara Hershey's character is an unwanted digression from the plot line and adds nothing of value to the film.
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