Review: The Winning Season (2011)

A comedy centered on a has-been coach who is given a shot at redemption when he’s asked to run his local high school’s girls basketball team. Now I wasn’t sure whether to write a review up or not seeing as this is a 2009 film, but as far as I can see it’s nowhere near coming to the UK – which is a shame. The Winning Season stars Sam Rockwell and Emma Roberts. It’s a sports comedy film with added heart. The film is as you expect it to be, its certainly not original but it’s the cast that makes it. In particular Sam Rockwell who absolutely steals the film. Rockwell plays Bill. He’s a washed up has been basketball player and sports coach. He’s a busboy at a restaurant until an old friend who is now a principle of a school offers him the job of coaching girls basketball – but its a ragtag group who Bill, reluctantly at the beginning turns them into a semi-winning team. Not only this we see Bill challenge to deal with his relationship with his daughter and ex-wife.

Emma Roberts is one of the girls in the basketball team. She’s essentially the ‘normal’ one out the team and the captain if you will. She’s not setting the stage on fire but for a film of this type she does a good job.

Along with the rest of the girls it’s a charming performance as a whole who in the end really care for there new coach. Sam Rockwell steals the film. Plain and simple. If there’s one character he can play well its broken people, someone who is battling with his new role in girls basketball, alcohol addiction and parenthood – it’s a real performance and it’s funny to boot. Rockwell’s banter with the girls was amusing and helped break the film up. It also gives Rockwell another opportunity to show off his dance moves again which is always welcomed. Overall I really enjoyed the film.

Yeah it’s cliched but the story is fun, Emma Roberts is great and Sam Rockwell is fantastic – see it just for him alone.


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